This week I read an interesting piece called ‘What is Aesthetic Journalism?’, written by Alfredo Cramerotti. What struck me was his introduction to the roots of journalism and how people communicated as far back as the medieval era. He commented that “art was a tool for understanding”, especially hundreds of years ago.
It made me ask the question, ‘Is journalism a form of art?’. The answer may very well depend on individual opinion but never the less it definitely originated from this background. Cramerotti discussed how explorer’s and conquerers often took artists along with them on voyages so that they could depict an accurate image of what they saw to share with their people. “The descriptive function of art widened the idea of creativity as a source of reliable knowledge”.
Religious groups, explorers, scientists, geographers, historians all once used art to communicate what they had discovered, seen or believed . Journalism serves the same purpose today, informing people of news and world events, however we do not generally view journalism as an art form even though as Cramerotti highlights, its foundations are artistic in nature. The trade requires practice, education and talent, as any art form, but overtime the paintbrush has been replaced with a pen in the process journalism has lost it’s association with art.
♦Cramerotti, Alfredo, 2011, “What is Aesthetic Journalism,” in Cramerotti, Alfredo, Aesthetic Journalism: How to Inform Without Informing, Intellect, London