Can a Venn Diagram be classified as art? The past couple of weeks, students discussed this question in our #DoNowVenn post. We asked students, Can a Venn diagram become art? What transforms a data collection tool into fine art? What are the elements needed to allow for this transformation?

On our KQED Art School, artist Chris Johanson created a painting by incorporating his personal thoughts into a Venn diagram, demonstrating an example of conceptual art. Other artists, like Art School-featured artist Wendy Macnaughton, have used Venn diagrams, pie graphs and flow charts to share a thought or particular message. Katy Siegel, an art historian and critic, defines conceptual art as something where “there is a shift in emphasis from the aesthetic aspects of the artwork, the beauty of the painting, the form, the color, or the composition, to an emphasis to the ideas behind the artwork.”

Students expressed their opinions about why a Venn diagram can or cannot mean classified as something other than a data tool. The majority of them, however, stressed that above all else, art has no restrictions. A Venn diagram can be a form of art depending on how a person perceives the piece.

What is a Venn diagram?

One student started by researching what a Venn diagram is and how people use it.

It’s Art!

Students argued that a Venn diagram can be considered more than a data collection tool.

It’s Just A Data Tool

While other students discussed how art needs to have certain qualities for it to be considered art.

Wait, What is Art?

Most students questioned what makes something, like a Venn diagram, a piece of art.

Check out these creative Venn Diagrams students from URJC Master’s Degree program produced in response to this week’s post.

  • Thanks ever so much, once again, for highlighting the #DoNow_urjc in your RoundUp. We’re humbly honoured. All the best


Laura Robledo

Laura Robledo studied English at UC Berkeley. When she is not reading, looking up new music, or running half marathons, she loves to explore the beautiful city of San Francisco.

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