Monday, November 16, 2009

The New Role of Modern Art

I think the best label for the the new role of artists in the modern era is "Innovator". Realism, Impressionism, and Romanticism greatly contributed to the beginnings of modernism. Realists rebelled against the idealism of tradition artworks. Impressionists argued that paintings should be seen not as objects, but as the light that things reflect. Romantics were very interested in portraying emotions and the human condition. All of these ideas were different, innovative, and brought modern art forward. In the beginning of the 20th century, I think the modern artist was an artistic alchemist- an "Experimenter", exploring brave new subjects and abstractions. Cubism, fauvism and expressionism grew. I think the end of this period was World War I. At this time some artists took on the role of "Rebel". Dada began in Sweden and spread over the globe. Dada artists challenged the meaning of art as a social statement, believing the strict rules and structure of art and society had led to the abuse of capitalism and fascism. At this time I think artists took on the "???" label. Art was ironic and provoking and it was supposed to be that way. Dadaists were very playful. Pieces were intended to mean absolutely nothing but ironic and provoking, such as Duchamp's infamous "Fountain." Others were meant to mean much much more than what was visual recognizable, such as the sexual intrigue and alchemy of his "Large Glass," in which seven bachelors stand by, fueled by a masterbatory "chocolate grinder", observing "the bride," an internal combustion engine transmitting her desires onto a cloud of three messages. The seven bachelors await for the mechano-bride to get naked, but she never will.

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