“Nude women are only Art if there’s an urn in it,” said Fred Colon. This sounded a bit weak even to him, so he added: “Or a plinth. Both is best, o’course. It’s a secret sign, see, that they put in to say that it’s Art and okay to look at.”

— Terry Pratchett, Thud!



As someone who does ceramics, that twisted, broken up fork would make an excellent tool for slipping and scoring, or maybe even just texturing. It would make a super cute bug print, or make easy, perfectly spaced lines at a farther difference than a typical fork. It can be used for creating, rather than just feeding some giant machine. Just because it wouldn’t be particularly good at being used as it is expected to be used, which is not to say that a creative person couldn’t find a way to make it work, does not make it useless. In the right hands, even the most seemingly “useless” object can be functional, or even groundbreaking in the right hands.

Also, people aren’t objects, and you dont need to be able to “use” them in order for them to exist.

Although the third item may not be useful as a fork, it may not be a fork at all. It might be a spongulator or breckinaid or wizmark. I don’t know,

it’s none of my business, I’m not a toolologist or a breckinmonger; I am only am amateur curator of mysterious artifacts. I 

(Whatever that particular strange item is, I’m sure that some archaeologist has one of its siblings in a drawer somewhere, labeled as a “ritual object.” We’ve probably been making them since the Bronze Age. Scholars probably throw up their hands helplessly when another one of these comes up; they debate their origins, label them as a fragment of a lost conversation with unknown gods.)

But the picture presents a series of items, presented as if they already have a relationship with each other, in which one of the items has failed. And, like, I’m not pretending to be an Art Critique here, but I feel like we got over that in the early 1900s with the Surrealists, yeah?

That’s the literal entire plot of The Ugly Duckling (1843).

Just because something’s been plonked down in context with some other things that it vaguely resembles doesn’t mean that it’s somehow Bad, because it fails to Resemble the Other Things, especially if it’s a pile of things that somebody arranged. The person who arranged the photograph deliberately arranged a context to make it seem as if the item had failed at being a fork. But if they had taken the same non-matching item and lit it artistically, then that same artist would be demanding accolades for their Very Original Picture of a Breckinaid.

Figure 2. Breckinaids are frequently exploited by artists and upcyclers, due to their abundance and versatility. They are commonly thought to be more useful, beautiful and valuable than forks, although, of course, that is not everything. 

However, all that being said: as OP says, people aren’t forks or breckinaids (or even wizmarks). And we are not measured by our ability to fork or breck. 

Although, obviously, we are all obligated to give a fork about each other.