19 June 2008

Proud To Be Lowbrow

Apparently I have been putting all my jewelry in the wrong category in my Etsy shop. I thought "jewelry" covered it, but in browsing yesterday by category, I stumbled on jewelry similar to mine, (but hey, not all hand drawn with all the love I put in) under "kitsch". I guess I never knew really what this meant, because according to Webster's dictionary, it is:

Pronunciation: \╦łkich\
Function: noun
Etymology: German
Date: 1925
1 : something that appeals to popular or lowbrow taste and is often of poor quality 2 : a tacky or lowbrow quality or condition
— kitsch adjective

Gosh, I thought it was just fun, retro-ish, maybe a little pop art, fifties funky, that sort of thing. Lowbrow?! That's a little harsh. I consider my stuff to be high quality, since I consider how abusive I am to jewelry, and design everything to stand up to that. I spend alot of time hand drawing what others would just photocopy some graphic and glue on, and I definately never considered anything I make "tacky". I prefer "funky" or even "unique". Nonetheless, I tried putting some of my things in the "kitsch" category just to see what happens. My newest, He Loves Me, He Loves Me Not earrings:

As it turns out, kitsch is a pretty broad term, that apparently means something different to everyone. Some really cool artists are considered kitsch. My favorite, Russian born South African artist Vladimir Tretchikoff, was considered "the king of kitsch" (quite a title, don't you think?), and also one of the best selling artists of all time. One of my favorites, Ballerina:
I'm not even in this dude's league, but I'll settle for being kitsch, even lowbrow, for now. If you're up for a little educational reading, you can read more about this fantastic artist here.
Or just waste some time browsing Kitsch on Etsy here. Have a kitschy day! xoxo

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