Columbia Southern University Early Mid Twentieth Century Artists Report

Columbia Southern University

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I’m studying for my Art class and need an explanation.

Written Essay (1000 Words)

Choose 2 artists from the Early-Mid 20th century (1900-1965) and 2 artists from the Mid-Late 20th Century (1965-1990’s) – 4 artists overall, and compare and contrast the different ways they make and think about their art practices. Please note the year is based on when the artist made the work, NOT on when they were born.

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Module 1: Early 20th century movements

Module 2: Mid-20th century movements

Module 3: Late 20th century movements

You need to look at them all to find who you would like to write about and include images if it's required to describe sources.

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Module 1 – Early 20th century art movements 1 Module 1 – Early 20th century art movements Learning outcomes On completion of this module you should have developed: ● an appreciation and understanding of the times which produced some of the most revolutionary artwork ● an ability to research, find and interpret a vast number of writings and articles. Learning resources Textbook: Harrison, C & Wood, P (eds) 2003, Art in theory 1900–2000: an anthology of changing ideas, rev. edn, Blackwell Publishers, Malden, MA. 1.1 Styles of the early twentieth century Reading activities Textbook: The aim of this course is to develop an understanding of 20th century art history, but also an ability to be able to research and develop an understanding of various modes of writings. For each art movement, students are asked to read the brief synopsis of each topic and then find a reading within the Art in theory 1900 – 2000: an anthology of changing ideas. Every student then must write a brief overview from their understanding of the article they have chosen. An article must be found and reviewed for EVERY TOPIC. By the end of the course you will be able to begin differentiating between various writings developing a more comprehensive understanding of 20th century and current contemporary art theory. 1.1.1 Shaping the scene The period between 1905 and 1914 which saw the birth of the Modern movement was one of increasing political tension. In 1905 Russia had suffered an humiliating defeat in its war with Japan which had erupted the year before, and this resulted in a general strike. The aggressive Kaiser Wilhelm II of Germany visited Tangiers, and this created an international incident. In 1906 the United States of America invaded and occupied Cuba. In 1908 Austria seized Bosnia and Herzegovina. In Turkey the Sultan Abdul Hamid II was deposed in 1909 by a new nationalist movement, the Young Turks. In 1910 the Portuguese monarchy was overthrown and replaced by a republican government. In 1911 in Germany Wilhelm II made a dramatic speech that was correctly interpreted as a challenge to the older and more © University of Southern Queensland Module 1 – Early 20th century art movements 2 established colonial powers; the Russian prime minister, Peter Stolypin, was assassinated, and the Manchu Dynasty which had been in power in China since 1644, fell. Italy went to war with Turkey and seized Tripoli and Cyrenaica. In 1912 Montenegro declared war on Turkey, a conflict that soon involved Bulgaria and Serbia. The king of Greece, George I was assassinated, and war broke out again in the Balkans with the result that Bulgaria, Turkey, Albania, Serbia, Russia, and Greece all became involved in the turmoil. Thus, the outbreak of a world-wide war in 1914 seemed an inevitable result of all the on-going machinations in international affairs (Lucie-Smith 1992, p. 447). Philosophically, the thinking in the early part of the twentieth century was dominated by ideas formulated in the nineteenth century. Marx and Freud did not really hit their stride until after the First World War. The occult which had so fascinated the Symbolists, continued to intrigue the avant-garde. Theosophy became a popular creed through the writings of Madame Blavatsky (1831–91), mixing as it did western occult traditions with ideas from eastern religions, and mid nineteenth century American spiritualism. Friedrich Nietzsche (1844– 1900) with his concept of the ‘superman’ also found interest and support amongst the avantgarde. The philosopher who did exert an impact on Modernist thought was Henri Bergson (1859–1941), mostly through his book, Creative evolution, which was published in 1907. His concept of time involving the accumulation of memory which preserved the past, and the non-existence of the future, which by its very nature, existed outside time evoked a sense of creative continuum. His catchphrase, ‘elan vital’, meaning the original energy of the life force, was seen as a focus of the creative spirit given even more encouragement by Bergson’s emphasis on intuition rather than on reason (Lucie-Smith 1992, p. 449). Art movements In the area of the visual arts, the transition period from the nineteenth to the twentieth century was exciting, colourful, explorative, and one that was underlined by a nervous energy that reflected the political instability across Europe. The story of Modern art which developed from this time can be told in a series of smaller movements that gathered around the two main thrusts of visualisation: Abstraction and Expressionism. Abstraction meant the absence of recogizable objects, an art in which the traditional European concept of art as the imitation of nature was abandoned. The Russian artist, Wassily Kandinsky (1866–1944) is credited with producing the first completely nonrepresentational painting in c.1910. The three tendencies in abstraction include the reduction of natural appearances to simplified form as in the sculpture of Constantin Brancusi (1876– 1957), or the Neo-Plasticism painting of Piet Mondrian (1872–1944), and the construction of art objects from non-representational basic forms as in the polychrome relief carvings by Jan (Hans) Arp (1887–1966), and the later relief work of Ben Nicholson (1894–1982). The third manifestation of Abstraction was the spontaneous ‘free’ expression of the Action painting in America in the 1950’s epitomized by the drip, splash, and pour technique used by Jackson Pollock (1912–56), (Chilvers 1990, p. 2). Expressionism could be said to have its antecedents as far back in time as the little fetish figure known as ‘The Woman of Willendorf’, from c.30.000–25.000 BC, through to the emotional exaggerations of Mathis Grunewald (c.1470/80–1528), and El Greco (1541–1614), and thence to the expressive use of colour and line by Van Gogh (1853–90). The term Expressionism, while denoting an exaggerated use of distortion as a means of conveying an emotional effect, can, in its broadest sense, be applied to any art that suggests that the © University of Southern Queensland Module 1 – Early 20th century art movements 3 interpretation of subjective feeling reflecting the state of mind of the artist, is paramount to objective observation (Chilvers 1990, p. 152). Aspects of both Abstraction and Expressionism united to become Abstract Expressionism, a movement that developed in New York in the 1940’s and was characterized by a spirit of revolt against tradition, and a demand for a spontaneous expression of freedom. The movement had various interpretations that included the Action painting of Jackson Pollock, the figurative abstractions of Willem de Kooning (1904–98), and Adolph Gottlieb (1903–74), the gestural statements of Franz Kline (1910–62), and the colour blends of Mark Rothko (1903–70), (Chilvers 1990, p. 2). 1.1.2 Fauvism Fauvism was a style of painting that used bright colours in a non-naturalistic way. The name, meaning ‘wild beast’, was taken from a derogatory comment made by the art critic, Louis Vauxcelles at the exhibition at the Salon d’Automne in 1905. He saw a quattrocento-like sculpture in the middle of the gallery and said: ‘Donatello among the wild beasts!’ The artists, who included Henri Matisse (1869–1954), Andre Derain (1880–1954), Albert Marquet (1875–1947), Georges Rouault, (1871–1958), and Maurice de Vlaminck (1876– 1958), were delighted. The movement was short-lived, with only Matise continuing to pursue expression through the use of vivid colour, however, it did have considerable influence in the development of German Expressionism. Reading activity 1 Textbook: Find a reading and review it on Fauvism or an artist associated with the movement. 1.1.3 German Expressionism German Expressionism was a narrow and focused aspect of the broader trend of Expressionism and, as such, was an important force in German art from 1905 to 1930. The key interpretations were ‘Die Brucke’, (The Bridge), foundered in around 1905 by a group of artists headed by Ernst Kirchner (1880–1938), and ‘Die Blaue Reiter’, (The Blue Rider), which took its name from a painting by member, Wassily Kandinsky. The ‘Bridge’ group railed against tradition and the older order of things while renewing an interest in wood cuts. The ‘Blue Rider’ group sought to express spiritual values in their work. Kandinsky, who with the artist Mondrian, has been called a father of the Abstraction Movement, is particularly worth noting because of his belief in the link between tonality of colour and the tonality in music and the expressive quality of both. He would exhort people to listen to his canvasses. (Refer to pages 595–6 of your textbook for a little more about the musical counterparts of German Expressionism). Oskar Kokoschka (1886–1980), explored Expressionist ideals through portraiture and became known for his ‘psychological portraits’ in which he maintained that he laid bare the soul of his sitter. A particularly innovative development in German Expressionism occurred in 1919 with the release of Robert Wiene’s film, ‘The Cabinet of Dr.Caligari’. Lighting effects were created by painting light and dark areas directly onto the walls and floors of the set. Pictorial © University of Southern Queensland Module 1 – Early 20th century art movements 4 Expressionism was applied to cinema with the exaggerated use of line, form, shape, and tonality to imply the emotional state of the characters. Reading activity 2 Textbook: Find a reading and review it on German Expressionism or an artist associated with the movement. 1.1.4 Cubism When Gertrude Stein (1874–1946), the writer, eccentric, art collector, friend and patron of artists such as Cezanne, Matisse, and Picasso wrote a biographical study of Picasso in 1938, she said in the preface: ‘Painting in the nineteenth century was only done in France and by Frenchmen, apart from that, painting did not exist, in the twentieth century it was done in France but by Spaniards’ (Mellow 1974, p. 429). The Spaniard who indeed changed the face of visual perception was Picasso (1881–1973), working in Paris with French artist Georges Braque (1882–1963), and another Spanish artist, Juan Gris (1887–1927). The new ‘ism’ they were responsible for introducing was ‘Cubism’. Cubism was the most radical re-working of pictorial space since the Renaissance where studies in perspective (by Brunellesci, Masaccio, and Alberti) had introduced the ‘Renaissance window’ effect in which the sequential progression of diminishing size and the softening and blurring of distant detail gave the illusion of depth in the space that was really a flat, two-dimensional picture plane. With Cubism there was a re-invention of pictorial space in which objects were seen in fragments, and then angles of these fragments, all of which were seen simultaneously but from many viewpoints. It is generally considered that the Cubist paintings of Picasso and Braque were done without reference to models. Although much has been written to suggest that Cubism sprung half-resolved from the work of Cezanne, it must be remembered that Cezanne, in his theory about the underlying structure in nature, referred to those units with curved surfaces: the cylinder, the cone, the sphere, no mention was made of a cube. More importantly, Cezanne painted his subjects unambiguously, he gave careful consideration to their actual existence and to the relative spaces between them. Cubism, on the other hand re-created objects from a multi-faceted view, the object seen from above, below, inside, outside, and around. The Cubists considered that pictorial space, as it existed on the two-dimensional surface of a picture plane, was unique and separate from natural space. This shallow depiction of space, with only a hint of depth, could be manipulated to give an ambiguous reading while still remaining true to the physical two-dimensional property of a picture (Lynton 1989, p. 57). This type of analysis of the object and its surrounding space was referred to as ‘Analytical Cubism’. Aspects of Cezanne’s way of seeing, however, certainly offered a point of departure for many artists, as well as Picasso and Braque. In 1907, the year after Cezanne’s death, there was a retrospective exhibition of his work in Paris. In the same year, there was also an exhibition of pre-Roman Iberian sculpture, and another exhibition of sculpture and masks from Africa. These exhibitions had a profoundly stimulating effect on the artists of the day, such as Amedeo Modigliani (1884–1920), much as the exhibitions of Japanese woodcuts and wood block prints had intrigued and influenced the Impressionists. © University of Southern Queensland Module 1 – Early 20th century art movements 5 Picasso absorbed influences from all these, as well as from the works of El Greco and Goya. Through the creative process of filtering shape and imagery, form and colour, Picasso produced a painting which would come to mark a pivotal point in the history of art, and a benchmark in the development of the modern art movement. The painting was ‘Les Demoiselles d’Avignon’, 1907. The painting began life as an allegory of venereal disease which Picasso originally called the ‘The Avignon Brothel’ or ‘The Wages of Sin’, and it seems he was never really at ease with its subsequent title. The influence of the African sculpture can be seen in the mask-like faces, but there is also a certain visual homage to Cezanne’s work, ‘Les Grandes Baignesses I’, (The Great Bathers), 1894–1905. It is flat and confrontational, with a sense of depth only being alluded to by the fragments of recessional blue to indicate some slightly extended spatial edges. The work caused some consternation amongst Picasso’s colleagues. When Braque saw the work he said (Penrose 1966, p. 125): ‘You may give all the explanations you like, but your painting makes me feel as if you were trying to make us eat cotton waste and wash it down kerosene’. Analytical Cubism gave way to Synthetic Cubism, using a process of ‘papier colle’, in which actual materials such as cloth, rope, wood, and paper were collaged or glued onto the canvas. Picasso’s ‘Still Life with Chair Caning’, 1912, framed with actual rope, was a focal point. However, Braque, and in particular, Gris, became exponents of this style which elevated an old folk art tradition to the status of fine art. The incorporation of collaged assemblages and papiér collé, was used by the German artists Hannah Höch (1889–1978) and Kurt Schwitters (1887–1948) a decade or so later with great ingenuity. Collage and assemblage work have remained a consistently popular medium of expression ever since. Marcel Duchamp (1887–1968) combined aspects of Analytical Cubism with imagery based on the analysis of movement as captured by the photographer Etienne Jules Marey (1830– 1904) in a series of sequential images of a nude figure to create his famous ‘Nude Descending a Staircase’, 1912, a work which caused much criticism when shown at the Amory Show in New York in 1913. Reading activity 3 Textbook: Find a reading and review it on Cubism or an artist associated with the movement. 1.1.5 Futurism The depiction of movement combined with a celebration of dynamism and power associated with modern technology motivated the Italian response to French Cubism. This movement was known as Futurism and was foundered in 1909 by the poet and illustrator, Filippo Tommaso Marinetti (1876–1944). Although originally a literary movement it also incorporated sculpture, architecture, music, and cinema. The dominant figures, however, were painters. Giacomo Balla (1871–1958), remembered for his whimsical ‘Dynamism of a Dog on a Leash’, 1912, taught Umberto Boccioni (1882–1916), and Gino Severini (1883– 1966) in Rome. Boccioni was the only sculptor of the movement although he is also remembered for his dynamic painting. He embraced the two prime concerns of Futurism: the production of emotionally expressive works and the representation of time and movement. Boccioni wanted sculpture released from the confining outer surfaces so that the work could © University of Southern Queensland Module 1 – Early 20th century art movements 6 ‘fuse’ with its surrounding space. The release of energy he attempted to show as flame-like shapes leaping from the muscular limbs which can be seen to such effect in his sculpture, ‘Unique Forms of Continuity in Space’, 1913. Reading activity 4 Textbook: Find a reading and review it on Futurism or an artist associated with the movement. 1.1.6 Dada Into this sense of weary disillusionment came an art movement that challenged the institutions, thumbed its collective nose at any sort of perceived established order, and blew metaphorical raspberries at the hypocritical and the pompous posturing of society. This nihilistic movement was called Dada, the word in French means ‘hobby horse’, although it is said that the word was chosen at random. The artist Marcel Janco said with reference to Dada (Richter 1966, p. 22): Dada was not a school of artists, but an alarm signal against declining values, routine and speculative, a desperate appeal on behalf of all forms of art, for a creative basis on which to build a new and universal consciousness of art. Dadaism was an aggressive reaction by a group of writers and artists who maintained that humankind had shown that it was without reason. Therefore it was pointless to find any sense of order and meaning in a corrupt world whose so-called traditional, rational values had produced such destruction and chaos. It was a radical art form which sought to rework readymade objects in such a way as to shock people out of their automatic conformity and acceptance of cultural values. Marcel Duchamp bought a porcelain urinal, signed it ‘R. Mutt’, and exhibited it as an art work titled, ‘Fountain’. He went on to do similar things with hat stands, bicycle wheels, saucepan racks and snow shovels. By re-contextualizing the object he dignified it as art by its mere placement in a gallery, an ironic comment on the pretentiousness of the gallery system and the regard in which fine art is held. Duchamp bought a mass produced print of the ‘Mona Lisa’, one of the world’s most famous, and recognized paintings, to which he added a beard, a moustache, and the irreverent title, ‘L.H.O.O.Q.’ (1919). Dada artists in Germany included Hannah Höch, and Kurt Schwitters who used collage, and photomontage in which parts of photographs were incorporated into their works. Collage was an appropriate extension of Dada, using as it often did photo-reproduced images from newspapers and magazines. As Robert Hughes (Hughes 1991, p. 71) has said: Taken directly from the ‘reckless everyday psyche’ of the press, stuck next to and on top of one another in ways that resembled the laps and dissolves of film editing-images which could combine the grip of a dream with the documentary ‘truth of photography’. Of all the movements of arts, Dada, and perhaps more particularly, Surrealism, have had a profound and lingering effect on how people view events. © University of Southern Queensland Module 1 – Early 20th century art movements 7 In the 1913 edition of the French Larousse Dictionary ‘Dada’ was referred as: ‘a noun, masculine, funny or childish term, used it to describe a horse’. By the 1924 edition, after the last Dada manifesto, Dada enters the dictionary as: ‘noun, masculine. A name voluntarily devoid of meaning, adopted by a literary and artistic school around 1917, whose platform, entirely negative, tends to make extremely arbitrary, if not suppress completely, any connection between thought and expression’. It did indeed create a ...
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Final Answer


Running head: ART EVALUATION


Art Evaluation
Student’s Name
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Art Evaluation


Early Mid- Twentieth Century Artists (1900- 1965)

a. Pop- Art
The artistic influence developed in the late 1950s with the artistic impressions in the
United Kingdom that was common among the popular culture practices. Pop- art artists
introduced a challenge to the traditional exceptional art concepts through the inclusions of
imageries obtained from the mass and popular cultures such as comic books, advertisements, and
cultural objects produced ordinarily (Evrard, 2019). The pop-artist was the original artistically
work that initiated the concepts of representational visual communication.
Artist. Peter Blake is a British nationalist with the impression of the dominant
understanding of pop- art practices that significantly dictated the interests of the organizations to
attain the relevancy of the art. His artistic work produced engraving, sculptures, and printmaking
in the graphic forms. Blake expressed the relevancy of pop- art by combining fine art with
images from pop- a culture where Blake pop- art products present the images of music- hall
entertainers, wrestlers, and advertisements (Evrard, 2019). Blake’s art attained its iconography
from comic books, televisions, and movie magazines to create artistic content.
b. Photorealism
The artistic concepts in the photorealism structure are evidently applied in the realistic
depiction of the objects or scenes, usually in an enlarged scale. The photorealism arts are

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