Commerce and the Arts

Today, the arts are a multibillion-dollar industry. Commerce plays a key role in producing or coordinating the physical and financial resources needed for the production of artistic works and for their dissemination to consumers. Nevertheless, the relationship between commerce and the arts can be tense, with the profit motive of commerce at times conflicting with the social, humanistic, and political motives of artists.

Definition: The Arts

Traditionally, the arts include the musical arts (e.g., piano music, symphonies), the literary arts (poetry, novels), the dramatic arts (plays), the musicodramatic arts (opera, ballet), and the visual arts (painting, sculpture, drawing), to which modern times have added, for example, cinema, still photography, and computer graphics. A characteristic of the 20th century was a conscious exploration of the distinction between “arts” ...

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