from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Typical crafts:
the glass-blowing
Typical crafts:
the musical instruments
Typical crafts:
the porcelain painting

Arts and crafts stands for any craft for which artistic skills are decisive and necessary. The products of the handicrafts are in independent manual work and manufactured according to own designs unique items ( author's products ).

The arts and crafts, like the related arts and crafts , are assigned to the applied arts . However, it is not to be equated with the arts and crafts, which also produce objects of daily use in series, by machine and reproduced according to foreign designs.

Regardless of the artistic quality requirements and the production method, the term “arts and crafts” has established itself as a collective term for both arts and crafts and arts and crafts products from all over the world.


The term "craft" was after the profession of painters, illuminators, glass artists, glass blowers, engravers, sculptors, goldsmiths and silversmiths, carvers, cabinet maker , Drechsler had been considered Weber, instrument makers, image-maker, pottery and the like for centuries as pure craftsmanship , only recently pronounced.

In France, the first separation of the craftsmen took place through the breakout of the painters and sculptors known today as visual artists from the Communauté des maîtres peintres et sculpteurs de Paris . This break was sealed in 1647 with the founding of the Académie royale de peinture et de sculpture .

The progressive development of handicraft series productions, which went hand in hand with the industrialization of the manufactories since the 18th century (see for example: Oberkampf 's Toile-de-Jouy -Manufaktur, founded in 1760 ), prompted the artistically active craftsmen, with reference to the design quality of their works and the One-off production to stand out from traditional craft . The combination of the words “art” and “handicraft” emphasizes the qualitative and quantitative values ​​of handicraft work in contrast to the serial and mass reproducible products of industry .

The term arts and crafts emphasizes - in comparison to art - the craft and technical interest. In the preservation of traditional handicraft techniques, handicrafts take on an important task: materiality, processing and aesthetics of the design play an important role, with deeper autonomous mental processes taking a back seat. Creation remains predominantly in functional and applied areas. Often designs and aesthetic interests are applied, in particular to be able to upgrade consumer goods.

In contrast to designers , who mainly create prototypes for series and mass production, arts and crafts are mainly unique and small series that are made by hand. Most of the time, the designer and the practical executor (manufacturer) are one and the same person.

The definition of crafts coincides largely with the English names Arts and Crafts in the 19th century and Studio Crafts in the 20th century.

Concept formation

The term “applied arts” was coined in the second half of the 19th century. It developed in the process of industrialization , in which the handicraft lost its previous position in the production of goods to the publishers , the manufactories and factories .

The freedom of trade introduced in Germany in 1869 only marked the end of a development of greater centralization efforts that began as early as the 18th century with the reform of the Imperial Crafts Code and were intensified after the end of the Seven Years' War and the Wars of Liberation . These lifted the remaining privileges of city guilds . The removal of control over the markets worsened the conditions of competition for the craftsmen, who were always financially weak, while the production and sales opportunities for the factories and the developing industry in the domestic market continued to improve.

While the industry was awarded the predicates of progress and modernity, the traditional "old craft" was shaped with the stigma of the conservative. With the loss of sales and status, the process of searching for possible ways out that would secure one's existence began. One of the ways led to distance oneself from the mass of affected craftsmen. The aesthetic criterion of art in handicraft was found and emphasized as a distinction.

Excursus England

In Europe, this development began in the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland . Due to the early industrialization, the products of industrial mass production had already found their way into many areas and replaced traditional handicrafts.

The Great Exhibition of the Works of Industry of all Nations , held in London in 1851, revealed the changes that had already occurred in Great Britain. In addition to the technical products on display, the UK industry did not win an award in any category based on aesthetic criteria. The ugliness of the design and the shabbiness of the finish, which came with the obvious use of cheap substitute materials, was a shock. The commentary written by John Ruskin in 1883 on the description of the painting The Awakening Conscience exhibited by William Holman Hunt in 1852 gives an impression of contemporary criticism .

William Morris , along with other artists who were influenced by Ruskin, saw in industrialization the danger of crippling human virtues as well as artistic creativity. A way out was sought in a return to traditional individual craftsmanship and linked to the artistic community. Without ultimately finding a solution to the economic conditions that had led to the existing situation, they advocated a business ethic that should focus on people. In addition to the first socialist ideas, the transfigured idea of ​​an ideal world of medieval craftsmanship developed.

One result caused by the aesthetic shock of the 1851 exhibition led to the establishment of the Museum of Ornamental Art or Museum of Manufactures in 1853 by one of the directors of the 1851 Great Exhibition, Henry Cole . The original aim of the foundation was to bring together a collection of the best historical pieces of applied art and to make them available to the public to enhance the tastes of producers and consumers in Great Britain.

Another stage was the Art Treasures Exhibition held in Manchester in 1857 . The exhibition was reserved for exhibits from the visual and applied arts .

Germany in the 19th century

After 1880, the tradition of journeyman and master was revived in many places in Germany . At the same time, new networks of artisanal organization and lobby structures emerged in cities, on a territorial and national level. It became established chambers of crafts , craft associations and - clubs new. This development was accompanied by symbolic actions, such as the reintroduction of terms such as that of the guild .

Neither through the propagation of a constructed tradition, a professional ethos without an economic basis, nor through the established structures, the craft was able to exert influence on political and economic decisions and regain influence and privileges. The competition with industry continued.

In order to withstand this, part of the craft went over to emphasize the artistic character of the craft over industry. At the same time, the reference served the purpose of raising the social status of the craftsman and the prestige value of his goods compared to the now simple craftsman and his inferior - inartistic and only manual - work.

This approach was based on the idea that artistic values ​​in craft production can be imprinted on and impressed on the work through the education of the artist. In the early phase from 1870 to 1880, the arts and crafts movement was of the opinion that art could be used in all production processes, both in mechanical, mechanized and manual work. Alois Riegl was one of the representatives of this view .

Schools for artisans in Germany

Education courses in the German education system

Vocational and professional schools

This sortable list contains vocational and professional development institutions for artisans. By clicking on the box in the first row of the corresponding column, they can be sorted according to other criteria.

The list does not claim to be complete.

country Educational institution place Subject area job profile Remarks
Baden-Württemberg Goldsmith school with watchmaking school Pforzheim Gold / silversmith , watchmaker , engraver , gemstone setters , enamelur oldest commercial school since 1768 worldwide
Baden-Württemberg Commercial school Schwäbisch Gmünd Goldsmith School Schwäbisch Gmünd Gold- / silversmith, engraver, gemstone setters, enamelur, vocational college Founded in 1776
Baden-Württemberg Gottlieb Daimler School
Commercial school center
Master school for weaving technology
Sindelfingen Weber
Bavaria Vocational school for
wickerwork design,
Lichtenfels Wattle design Wattle designer only German wattle school
Bavaria Vocational school for
glass and jewelry,
Kaufbeuren - Neugablonz Glass painter , goldsmith , engraver, silversmith
Bavaria Vocational college for glass-ceramic design Glass designer , ceramist
Bavaria Vocational school for wood carving and carpentry in the Berchtesgadener Land district Berchtesgaden Wood design Carpenter
wood sculptor
Bavaria Technical school for carpenters and wood carvers in
the Upper Bavaria district,

technical academy for interior and object design
Garmisch-Partenkirchen Room and object design
Room and object designer
Bavaria Technical school for ceramics Landshut, state Landshut Ceramist
Bavaria Glasfachschule Zwiesel
State vocational training center for glass
Zwiesel Glass finishing Glass painter, glass grinder, glass engraver, glass blower , glass maker , glass sculptor
Berlin University of Art in Berlin Berlin largest art college in Europe, has existed since 1696
Hesse Federal technical school for the glazier trade Hadamar
Hesse Erwin Stein School Hadamar
Hessian State Glass School
Hesse Professional, professional and Technical school
for precious metal design professions,
(drawing academy Hanau)
Hanau Metal design Goldsmith, silversmith, metalworker, engraver, gem setters
Hesse University of Kassel kassel Ceramic, furniture, textile design
North Rhine-Westphalia Vocational school for glass technology and glass design Rheinbach Glass finishing Glass grinder / -graveur / etchers
glass painter
Art Glaser
North Rhine-Westphalia Technical school for metal design,
Solingen Metal design
Saxony-Anhalt Burg Giebichenstein University of Art in Halle Halle (Saale) Metal, glass, ceramics, books, textiles, jewelry Diploma in Art, Bachelor and Master in Design
Saxony West Saxon University of Applied Sciences Zwickau Schneeberg Wood, fashion, textile Bachelor
Saxony West Saxon University of Applied Sciences Zwickau Markneukirchen Musical instruments Bachelor

Institutions of the chambers of crafts

Learning and understanding the processes of craft design is the key to convincing results in craft. The secret of creative new development lies in mastering these processes for successful craftsmen. Designers in the trade create a distinctive profile as a reference that eludes comparability via price through comprehensible quality and individual production (unique) and stands out from the series product. The chambers of handicrafts in the various countries endeavor to maintain the high standards based on tradition and to support craftsmen in developing and selling contemporary and useful items in the future. The chambers now have thirteen academies for design , including:

  • Gut Rosenberg - Academy for Craft Design of the Aachen Chamber of Crafts
  • Werkakademie for design in Lower Saxony
  • Kassel Werkakademie for Design
  • Education Center Munich - Academy for Design and Design
  • Academy of design in the craft of Münster
  • Academy of Crafts in Saarbrücken
  • Academy for design in the craft in Brandenburg an der Havel .
  • Competence center "Designer in the craft" Halle (Saale)

All academies are organized nationwide in a consortium.

Crafts prices

See also

Portal: Handicrafts  - Overview of Wikipedia content on handicrafts

previous organizations:


  • Joan Campbell: The German Werkbund 1907-1934 . Klett-Cotta, Stuttgart 1981, ISBN 3-12-911980-9
  • Gustav Friedrich Hartlaub: The eternal craft in the arts and crafts of the present: Examples of modern arts and crafts design . Publisher H. Reckendorf, Berlin 1931, DNB 361456271
  • Hugh Honor: Lexicon of Crafts and Design . [Electronic resource] (= Digital Library Volume 68, CD-ROM). Directmedia Publ., Berlin 2004, ISBN 3-89853-468-5
  • Stefan Muthesius: Crafts / arts and crafts . In: Journal of Design History , Design History Society. Oxford 1998.
  • Michael Stürmer: Autumn of the old craft: Sources on the social history of the 18th century. Deutscher Taschenbuch-Verlag, Munich 1979, ISBN 3-423-02914-5

Web links

Commons : Crafts  - collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. gestalter-im-handwerk.de
  2. ^ State Prize for Design, Art and Craft