The important thing to think about in regard to Ebu-Arts is that it is “art from art,” a concept that can be realized in a vast multitude of ways. Whether composed of articles that are collected by the artist or created with his or her own hand, it should strive for a transcendence that can only be reached through a distinctly cumulative process—artworks joined together to form a new, greater artwork.
What Ebu-Arts is:
- Two-dimensional or three-dimensional artworks created from pre-existing artworks and aesthetically-designed products, which serve as the new creation’s primary materials.
- Composed of aesthetic objects and/or artworks that required human craftsmanship and design for their own construction (ideal articles are those that can generally be considered valuable or sell-able on their own; however, intricate and unique utilitarian articles may also be incorporated. If the piece includes utilitarian objects, these objects must have been designed beyond a strictly utilitarian purpose).
- Unbound by any constraints of size, shape, or subject.
- Assemblage art, in the sense that the assemblage consists of what’s described above (substrates, or frameworks, may be used for sculpture pieces, so long as the substrate does not dominate the design to the extent that the result is merely a decorated, otherwise un-manipulated framework).
What Ebu-Arts is not:
- Adornment art. Again, Ebu-Arts is not to be considered merely decorative, and while there’s room for endless variations on the points above, a statue that the artist simply encrusts with jewels, for instance, would generally not constitute Ebu-Arts.
- Traditional mosaic art. Photomosaics may be the most recognizable and telling examples of Ebu-Arts; however, traditional mosaic art, made from non-Ebu materials like shattered glass or simple tiles, would generally not be considered Ebu-Arts (however, a mosaic made from deeply intricate, meticulously designed tiles would constitute Ebu-Arts).
- Recycled or Deconstructionist/Reconstructionist art. While the notion of assemblage is integral to the Ebu-Arts philosophy, and manipulation of materials may very well apply, works of the genre generally wouldn’t consist of materials that are scraps and deconstructed remnants of other works or objects. Such materials negate the core objective of cumulative artistic value. On the other hand, if smaller artworks must be manipulated in the Ebu-Arts assemblage, this would be considered an acceptable step in building an Ebu-Arts work.
- Composed of organic materials. While naturally beautiful objects like butterfly wings and flowers would ostensibly serve the Ebu-Arts objective of cumulative grandeur, such materials counteract the fundamental notion of “art from art.” Therefore, plants, rocks, insects, bones, fur, feathers, shells, natural pearls, and the like would not be considered Ebu-Arts materials (cut, processed, and polished precious stones are exceptions, as they fall into the category of fine jewels and jewelry).
- Food Art. Of course, as art is almost never defined in rigid terms of black and white, but by the manner with which it can capture the literal and figurative colors in between, there are undoubtedly exceptions to the general outline above. What’s important is that the genre’s fundamentals and overarching philosophy be understood, so that Ebu-Arts, like any art form, can ultimately be recognized through its own visual language.