Commercial art - real art?

I first started to become aware of 'art' when I was about 8 in 1956. This was a mixture of classic paintings and commercial art. Later on, in the 60's, the latter was fueled by my mum's Woman's Own and other magazines which were mostly reprinted from the American Redbbook magazine and other weeklies featuring American artists such Bart Forbes and Bernie Fuchs. They were the first users of the new wonder paint - Acrylic. The use of this new paint led to a lot of experimentation in technique and colours which leads us back to Hockney.

In the 70’s there were English artists like Brian Sanders who illustrated magazines, newspapers and paperback book covers that meant that the general public were exposed to illustration than we are today.

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Jack Vettriano comes to mind in this context. Norman Rockwell I think of as an illustrator for his Saturday Evening Post covers. I like Hopper as he has a graphic approach to the design of his paintings.

There has been this rather snooty attitude by the British art establishment to what became known, in Victorian times, as 'commercial' art. This meant producing art mainly for reproduction in magazines and newspapers for advertising purposes. If you were a commercial artist you couldn't be a fine artist, a distinction which has never worried the Americans. The almost exclusive use of illustration from the 1800's up until the early 1970's for all advertising enabled many a starving fine artists to survive. I find it difficult to describe the difference between fine and commercial art as my initial idea is that commercial art is art produced to a fairly tight brief by whoever is paying but this applied to a lot of Renaiassance artists who were commissiond by wealthy patrons, including the Church. This applies up until the present day. Maybe fine art is that which is a single piece meant to be hung and viewded on a wall and commercial, that which is meant to be reproduced. Here is a piece of amazing commercial art by two American illustrators, Art Fitzpatrick and Van Kaufman for General motors.