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When fine artists say their work is “multi-disciplinary”, what would a discipline mean in this context?

  • November 21, 2002
  • Posted by Dyske
  • Filed in Style

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In this case, "discipline" refers to feilds of study. Just like "disciple" means "follower or pupil." This would be a noun or thing, whereas disciplined would be a verb. I know, it's confusing. English doesn't really makes sense all the time. :)

purpledragon_13 November 22, 2002, 9:21pm

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Actually Evelyn, you've made quite a few errors in your post as well... not to be picky, but...

An artistic discipline is a medium or form of art, such as painting, sculpture, photography, etc. A better way of describing work that is inter-disciplinary (ex. a painting that incorporates photographs) is "mixed media".

Disciplined is an adjective or adverb, describing for example a meticulous work process, or a regular fitness regime - "She is a very disciplined athlete - she gets up every morning to run and never eats junk food."

So the word discipline can either be a form of art, training, etc., or it can be the quality of pursuing that form in a very rigorous and focused way.

Hope that helps ;-)

calebia November 28, 2002, 3:48am

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To make it simple for you, multi-disciplinary refers to studies that, for example, include say economics, biology, physics, anthropology, and sculpture. Evelyns post is correct, Calebia's less so, discipline is also a verb, 'to discipline'.

Note that the single quotation mark (') is used to denote emphasis only, the double (") is reserved for citations, e.g., "To be or not to be, that is the question.".

Neat blog, hope its helping.

owlcast March 19, 2003, 2:33pm

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Use single or double quotation marks consistent with whatever style guide you are following. Owl's second paragraph is not sound advice, nor is her ending punctuation correct, regardless of the style guide being followed. ".'." with two periods separated only by quotation marks can never be correct. (American typography style, bizarre though it may appear.)

erle April 10, 2003, 7:05pm

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It means that the artist deserves to be disciplined at least once for each art form bastardized in the finished work.


speedwell2 May 17, 2004, 8:14pm

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I've heard of bastardizing another artwork, but bastardizing an art form?

Anonymous Coward May 18, 2004, 6:17pm

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AC, I always thought "bastardized" was identical in meaning to the phrase "corrupted and made illegitimate." An art form can certainly be a "legitimate art form," so if an artist makes a work in which he crudely and resentfully makes nonsense out of an art form, you certainly may call it "bastardized."

Think of the people who smear excrement on a canvas and call it "painting." Or, rather, don't think of them... think of something nice instead. It's too damn early in the morning to think of nasty things like that. :)

speedwell2 May 19, 2004, 4:06am

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"Multi-disciplinary" implying the embodiment of a variety of "disciplines", or different branches, areas, or fields in a certain study (specified here to art), each with their own respective rules or methods which are assumed to be different.

EXISLE June 23, 2004, 4:52pm

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Is that unless you're English?

EXISLE to OWL June 23, 2004, 4:54pm

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Yes     No