chapter  4
37 Pages

The Design Art Cultural Niche

With the advent of the Industrial Revolution, however, the crafts tradition changed. The objects and tools that people used in everyday life now were produced by manufacturers. By the middle of the nineteenth century, Europeans could afford to have manufactured items in their hornes. There was a dramatic drop in the cost of ceramics and textiles. This meant that many items which had been made by craftsmen, like crockery ane! cloth goods, were now cheaper to buy from a mass manufacturer than they were to hand make (Garvan, 1967). With the progress of the Industrial Revolution, isolated rural communities which had been the market for crafts, slowly disappeared. People's tastes changed with exposure to manufactured items so that they wanted things that were modeled in a style after those manufactured goods. This also had a negative impact on handicraft. Not only could items be bought that before had been made, but also items could be bought that had previously not been available at all to the lower levels of society. The lower class could enjoy many of the comforts of middle-class life. Before the Industrial Revolution, people's hornes consisted of all-purpose rooms

with very little furniture. After the Industrial Revolution, there was great availability of discarded high-style furniture. People's hornes changed to duttered single function rooms with well-stuffed furniture, richly colored walls, and elaborately carpeted floors. These rooms were often filled with paintings and elaborate curtains, all of which had now become cheap and available due to mass manufacturing, rapid transportation, and mass communication (Garvan, 1967).