Summary: With the different art forms available today, it is really difficult for a layman to get a grip on the different aspects that are related to art. Through this article we try to educate art lovers on what Contemporary or Modern Art is.
So, what is Contemporary or Modern Art? This term is used to describe the art that is produced during current times (& continues to be) and by artists living today. This was easy to understand, wasn’t it? Contemporary art has developed from the way art was created in the last century and thus includes Post-Modern Art, a successor of Modern Art. Contemporary or Modern Art embraces several Art forms right from Sculpture, painting, installation art, print, performance, photography, collage, multimedia and digital art.
Modern era unfolded with it a number of ideals such as liberty, equality, fraternity and a society that had been irrevocably transformed. Art became an equally deemed subject like philosophy and was open to be discussed. Artists became self-conscious and self-reliant. They were no longer constrained by a preconceived style, subject matter or technique. Contemporary art is simply the art created during our lifetimes.
A major difference that has shaped the Contemporary art and that sets it apart from others is that when engaging with contemporary art, viewers and buyers look above question that highlight its aesthetics, quality, medium, etc. Instead, buyers deliberate on if the piece of art is "challenging" or "interesting." In fact, contemporary came into existence when artists and art lovers alike started questioning traditional ideas and methods of creating & appreciating art.
The concept of Contemporary art also caught the fancy of artists and art lovers alike because art made during this period celebrates experimentation and places traditions of the past aside. Experimenting with different materials and ways of seeing art, the functionality of art developed with the move away from the narrative, characteristic of the traditional arts, towards abstraction. This newfound freedom and revolutionary way of relying on the inner visions and expression of such visions marks the biggest influence of Modern Art. This reflected not only the move towards non-figuration but also influenced the approach to real life, social issues and images of modern life.
The themes explored by this art are most socially conscious, and may be derived from any previous era. The techniques employed reflect latest variety of mediums and technology. Artists have liberty to use video, multimedia, photography, nature, music etc. to express their ideas. It even finds manifestation in architecture through decorated castles, stately homes and Churches that may portray allegorical, mythological and religious subject matters. Contemporary Art can help enhance our home’s interior design by adding layers and visual interest by way of a huge selection of paintings, fine art prints, and sculpture.
Who/what is the subject of a Contemporary artist?
Gone are the days when the artists/authors used to be the only owners of the art piece with only a subject in mind. Contemporary art has ensured that the audience become an integral part of art. The process is very important, so are the different approaches taken to make an artwork. This helps the outcome to be unique and full of substance.
This escape away from the dominant definition only strengthens the postmodern spirit. In comparison to one of the dominant and influential movements of Modern Art, Abstract Expressionism, Contemporary Art seems to lack that shared idea and expression, since the time that the Contemporary art is created is the time of constant questions, re-evaluations, and experimentation. This experimentation is leaving nothing sacred. Everything is up for grabs and everything can be Art. Due to all of this, the subjects of the contemporary works, followed by the trend of the moment, create the trend of the moment themselves and always attempt to expand the ideas of what is Art in the first place. Topics of such works, often reflect the heated issues of the contemporary society with the aim to re-define the world and accepted values.