When viewing much of the Modern Art
produced today, many people will refer to it, colloquially, as Abstract Art. However, Modern Art has many facets, and there have been many different styles and concepts, which have brought around metamorphic changes, within Abstract Art, since the beginning of the twentieth century. The changes within Art, especially Oil Painting, over the past hundred years or so, have been somewhat fast and furious. Art has been a part of our lives for centuries, yet there has been little to match the ebb and flow the Art world has experienced since the early nineteen hundreds. New concepts have been introduced and developed, until they evolve into something else. In this way, each new, Modern Art movement has, effectively, given rise to a new one.
Some of the changes have been more influential and had more impact than others. From the early Abstract Wall Art of the twentieth century, has come the De Stijl, Fauvism, Abstract Expressionism, Minimalism and Pop Art. To select but a few of those most prominent twentieth century movements. All of which have, primarily, evolved from the original concepts behind Abstract Art.
Much of the Contemporary Art, of the twenty first century has its roots in Abstract Art. At the end of the nineteenth century, and into the beginning of the twentieth century, Cubism made a huge leap. It crossed over boundaries, which had never been touched before, and, most certainly, never passed. Cubism, without doubt, brought about an incredible and dramatic change to the way Art was conceived, and, perceived. Even today, Contemporary Art has yet to make such a clear and unquestionable metamorphosis.
Cubism was one of the first twentieth century Art movements to be referred to as Abstract Art. It was radical, and began a revolution within European Oil Painting, and also Sculpture. The first 'phase' of this Modern Art movement was begun by two of the most famous, Contemporary Artists of the twentieth century; Pablo Picasso and Georges Braque. Cubism was extremely influential upon Artists, at the time, although short lived in Europe. It, being at its height, in France, from around 1907, until the outbreak of the First World War in 1914. The term Cubism was first applied to the work of Braque in 1908, by Louis Vauxcelles, a Paris Art Critic. Somewhat curiously, Braque and Picasso never referred to this work using the term Cubism.
In Cubism, multiple surfaces of an object are disassembled, examined in detail, then reassembled together. This was a revolutionary way to represent all the multi faceted surfaces of an object, within one single dimension. The single viewpoint depicted, being an abstracted form of those multiple facets. This being the main reason why so many people refer to Cubism as Abstract Art. Some of Picasso and Braque's work had been exhibited in New York, before the famous New York Armoury Show held in 1913. However, it would be Artist, Jacques Villon, who would be accredited with introducing America, to the Art of Cubism, at this particular, groundbreaking, exhibition. Cubism continued to be experimented with, in Europe and America, especially Czechoslovakia, until around 1921. Then, it would be Surrealism, which would capture their imagination.
Cubism is definitely not an Abstract Art movement which has passed by with the tides of time. A substantial number of Contemporary Artists have continued to draw upon its concepts and perhaps more obviously, its style. However, it is really the concepts behind Cubism, which have continued to make this once groundbreaking, Abstract Art Movement, so fascinating, for so long. Although many people regard Cubism as Abstract Art, and to a point that can be considered true, in reality, it remains a highly representational Modern Art form. Today, Representational Artists continue to compete with the ongoing value and interest society relishes upon photography, and the various other, mechanical, ways' imagery can be produced. However, this kind of imagery is rarely capable of depicting such a complex and multi faceted perspective. Therefore, when it comes to the depiction of an object, the concepts of Cubism could be deemed more relevant, and important, than ever.