Modernist Art Is Fundamentally About The Question What Is Art?

798 words - 4 pages

Visual Cultures of Modernity Shane GladstoneEssayComponent OneQuestion'Modernist art is fundamentally about asking the question - what is art?'DiscussIntroductionThe attempt to produce a response to contemporary visual art or to any particular examples of it, such as Andy Warhol and David Hockney, runs immediately into the problem of the legitimacy, or rather the lack of legitimacy, of modern art. This is the fact that much, if not all, of modern art (late 1800's to the present day) is regarded as a dubious or perhaps fraudulent activity by a substantial proportion of modern everyday society. The result is that the history of modern art is punctuated by numerous 'art scandals' in which ...view middle of the document...

In contrast to conservative modernism, which remained aligned to old ideas and tended to support the status quo, progressive modernism took up an antagonistic position towards society and its established institutional frameworks. The modernist's manifesto became focused upon the challenging of all authority in the name of freedom and truth. As a product of this they automatically affronted conservative borguios values and set up a social divide. The gradual breakdown of financial support from the church for this 'new' art gave the now independent artists the freedom to determine the appearance and content of their art at the price of capitalism induced poverty and starvation. This is were the term 'art for arts sake' derives from, as there was no interest in the art they were producing then there subsequently was no sales, this lack of production encouraged the artists to experiment with styles and techniques and produce pieces that were aesthetically challenging and self indulgent in stark contrast to the classical logical style. This idea of progress became more clearly relevant during the later post World War 2 era. A highly productive market for contemporary art emerged in...

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