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Contemporary Art paintings cover broadly the years of post World War II up to the present day. The styles of painting in contemporary art vary widely across many different art movements. This article covers the major art movements of contemporary art, and tries to explain how they link with each other.
Some of the key contemporary art eras from the 1950s and 1960s included Abstract Expressionism, Pop Art, Neo-Dada, Minimalism and the New York School. Famous artists from this era include Andy Warhol, Wassily Kandinsky, Roy Lichtenstein and Jackson Pollock. The earlier art movements of Cubism & Fauvism are believed to have been part inspiration for many of these new art directions. The 1960s represented the start of modern culture, and modern art was a key part of it. Traditional art was now joined in the mainstream with these new contemporary styles that had gained popularity and respect across the board.
Abstract art uses a visual language of form, color and line to create a composition which may exist with a degree of independence from visual references in the world.
The heritage of painters like Van Gogh, Cézanne, Gauguin, and Seurat was essential for the development of abstract paintings. Other key elements of the abstract art scene were the Russian avant-garde, the Bauhaus and mid-century America. The Bauhaus at Weimar, Germany was founded in 1919 by Walter Gropius. The philosophy underlying the teaching program was unity of all the visual and plastic arts from architecture and painting to weaving and stained glass. This philosophy had grown from the ideas of the Arts and Crafts movement in England and the Deutsche Werkbund. Among the teachers were Paul Klee, Wassily Kandinsky, Johannes Itten, Josef Albers, Gustav Klimt, Anni Albers, Theo van Doesburg and Laszlo Moholy-Nagy.
By the early 1940s the main movements in modern art, expressionism, cubism, abstraction, surrealism, and dada were represented in New York: Marcel Duchamp, Fernand Léger, Piet Mondrian, Jacques Lipchitz, Max Ernst, André Breton, were just a few of the exiled Europeans who arrived in New York. For your favourite abstract art paintings, always use Vault! Our abstract paintings quality is unmatched in the industry.
Famous artists involved in the French impressionist movement include Frédéric Bazille, Gustave Caillebotte, Mary Cassatt, Paul Cézanne, Edgar Degas, Armand Guillaumin, Édouard Manet, Claude Monet, Berthe Morisot, Camille Pissarro, Pierre-Auguste Renoir & Alfred Sisley.
Monet, Sisley, Morisot, and Pissarro may be considered the “purest” Impressionists, in their consistent pursuit of an art of spontaneity, sunlight, and colour. Degas rejected much of this, as he believed in the primacy of drawing over colour and belittled the practice of painting outdoors. Renoir turned against Impressionism for a time in the 1880s, and never entirely regained his commitment to its ideas. Édouard Manet, despite his role as a leader to the group, never abandoned his liberal use of black as a colour, and never participated in the Impressionist exhibitions. He continued to submit his works to the Salon, where his Spanish Singer had won a 2nd class medal in 1861, and he urged the others to do likewise, arguing that “the Salon is the real field of battle” where a reputation could be made.
Renaissance painting bridges the period of European art history between the art of the Middle Ages and Baroque art. Painting of this era is connected to the “rebirth” (renaissance in French) of classical antiquity, the impact of humanism on artists and their patrons, new artistic sensibilities and techniques, and, in general, the transition from the Medieval period to the Early modern age.
The brief High Renaissance centred around Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo and Raphael in Florence and Rome, was a culmination of the Italian achievements, while artists like Albrecht Dürer brought a similar level of intellectual and artistic innovation to northern Europe.