Design. An artfully designed urinal.
Art and craft serve different masters. MOMA is filled with utilitarian objects that fulfill Louis Sullivan's maxim, Form Follows Function. It is also full of beautiful things that do not fulfill any function.
If you've ever sat in an Eames chair, and then in a Wassily Chair, you'll know that design trumping actual comfort is not a good place to plant your backside. If you've lived in a leaky Frank Lloyd Wright house or a dark LeCorbusier flat, you'll realize that there is a difference between great art and great design. An Eames chair as a sculpture is a beautiful thing, worthy of display, it's just not a very good chair.
The analogy to photography is this. Pure "Art" photographs can be admired for all sorts of reasons, and from all sorts of aesthetic viewpoints. The gauzy pictorialists of the early 20th century and Diane Arbus both represent aesthetic viewpoints, but both are often dismissed as poor craft by those with different viewpoints. But these aren't craft - they are not designed to sell a product, please a portrait client, or depict a journalistic event.
So can the photojournalist or commercial photographer create art? Of course. Look at some of AA's "product shots" and portraits, or almost any of the great shots form Life magazine's 70+ year run. Don't tell me the famous photo of the sailor kissing the nurse in Times Square or the child fleeing the napalm attack are not art.
I like many different artistic viewpoints, and I do try to open my mind to new ones and new aesthetics. But yes, the snooty world of fine art can sometimes be so pretentious that the aesthetic becomes laughable.
With no disrespect to the artist, his family, or his many admirers (which included Andy Warhol), I present to you the little known (to me) works of the artist Fred Sandback, a minimalist whose "installations" of yarn and string, accopanied by "installation sketches" archivally framed and matted (sketches on yellow legal pads for the most part), were the main feature of the Fred Sandback Museum, in the small, working class town of Winchendon, Massachusetts for more than ten years. The grand opening, in 1981 saw Warhol and other glitterati flying in to attend, and I toured it a few days later with an artist friend. Each room featured yarn strung from one surface to another, one room had only a single strand running from wall to ceiling. When we entered it to view the installation, there were a couple of Sandback admirers vigorously arguing whether the string lying on the floor was a part of the installation, and if so, what its meaning might be. By the time we returned through that room, the custodian had apparently answered the question with a dry mop.
My point is simply this - enjoy whatever aesthetic and look pleases you, but please don't force it down the throats or others. And please don't look down on others who have a completely different aesthetic, even if it's admiration for a piece of yarn.https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fred_Sandback