Monday, July 28, 2014

Abstract Art (pt. 4)

The culminating end product of this deconstruction of art in the early 20th century was Non-Objective Art, a style that uses color, line, texture, and unrecognizable shapes and forms.  These works are totally abstract and contain no apparent references to reality.  When we arrive at Kandinsky, artists refuse even to title their works, in order to stay true to the idea of pure abstraction.  This painting is his Composition III.
Wassily Kandinsky's earliest artworks follow Post-Impressionist styles, with clear references to reality and actual subject matter.  He could paint realistically but eventually chose not to for specific, philosophical reasons.  Coming through art school, the painter sought new ways to show the world around him and express inner feelings through images not tied to tangible objects.  Art, in his mind, should not be merely an illustration of objects as they appear in nature.  He followed the theory that all nature can be simplified by geometry, and he believed that a painting should be a duplicate of some inner emotion (Expressionism).  But it's left completely to abstracts.  Kandinsky's paintings are very cerebral in that he doesn't give any clues as to what we are observing.  This is literally a canvas of lines and shapes, colors on an otherwise blank, white surface, much of which, by the way, has been left blank and white.  They appear structured and in some kind of order (most of his paintings, for instance, feature a blue circle, red square, and yellow triangle), but that order is indiscernible to us, the viewer.  Here we enter into a world not necessarily of imagination or style but of pure abstraction; the point of the painting is to exist outside of reality.  What meaning can come out of such a work?  That, too, is left open and undefined.  The artist is trying to create a work that extends beyond itself through non-reality, but how about you?  What do you think; is this art?  Have we broken off into something else?

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