CRAFTSMANSHIP VERSUS MACHINE-MADE

Artistic periods, as well as human attitudes, evolve over time. By studying the history of art and architecture, we can see how our culture has adapted and reacted to various stimuli over time. The central focus of art history is to examine specific stylistic characteristics of a “period.” While these characteristics are exalted, classified, compared and contrasted, what really has occurred when “periods of art” changed from one mode of expression to another, is that there was an underlying change in the way humans understand their world.

At the end of the 1800s and the beginning of the 1900s, the Industrial Revolution had become a dominant force in Western society. Standardization, mass production and mundane repetitive products increased the standard of living for the average Joe, but according to the artisans of the period, did nothing for the heart or soul. As a result, the Craftsman movement developed a series of principles, procedures and techniques that rejected the machine and promoted hand-made objects.

While this mailbox does not fit within the stylistic characteristics of the Craftsman movement, it certainly emanates from the attitudes that handmade objects are more heartfelt than ones made by machine. The postal services will not deliver mail to any enclosure that does not have its approval (and hence the inclusion of the standardized metal mailbox within this creation); it allows for any “mounting apparatus” that the homeowner employs.

For those interested in knowing the whereabouts of this mailbox, come to the Montecito Fourth of July Parade and Festival, where the address will be disclosed.