from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun One, such as a painter, sculptor, or writer, who is able by virtue of imagination and talent or skill to create works of aesthetic value, especially in the fine arts.
  • noun A person whose work shows exceptional creative ability or skill.
  • noun One, such as an actor or singer, who works in the performing arts.
  • noun One who is adept at an activity, especially one involving trickery or deceit.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun A person of especial skill or ability in any field; one who is highly accomplished; especially, one versed in the liberal arts.
  • noun One skilled in a trade; one who is master of a manual art; a good workman in any trade: as, a tonsorial artist.
  • noun One who practises any one, or any branch, of the fine arts; specifically, a painter or a sculptor.
  • noun A member of one of the histrionic professions, as an actor, a tenor, or a dancer.
  • noun In universities, a student in the faculty of arts.
  • noun One who practises artifice; a trickster.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun obsolete One who practices some mechanic art or craft; an artisan.
  • noun One who professes and practices an art in which science and taste preside over the manual execution.
  • noun One who shows trained skill or rare taste in any manual art or occupation.
  • noun obsolete An artful person; a schemer.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun A person who creates art.
  • noun A person who creates art as an occupation.
  • noun A person who is skilled at some activity.
  • adjective archaic Artistic.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • noun a person whose creative work shows sensitivity and imagination


from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[French artiste, from Old French, lettered person, from Medieval Latin artista, from Latin ars, art-, art; see ar- in Indo-European roots.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From French artiste, from Italian artista, from late Latin artista, from ars ("art").


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  • The fifth speaker on the schedule stood and delivered the following: "The Premise: If you're an artist and your work is cheap and derivative--do self-portraits. The Premise's Evil-Twin Stink-Bomb:You're all a bunch of artists."

    --Jan Cox

    April 6, 2007