Contemporary art is commonly understood as art that’s current, or art that has been produced recently. As an artwork ages, it is not known as contemporary anymore. It becomes historical.
Usually, art that’s produced in the 20th Century onwards are considered contemporary art. But it’s hard to classify an artwork as contemporary simply based on time alone. What happens if an artwork is produced based on ancient ideas? Would that art piece be considered as contemporary art? Hardly.
For an art piece to be widely recognized as contemporary art, contemporary ideas should be adopted when creating contemporary art. This has something to do with the evolution of art. Anyone who studies the historical records of art would be able to understand how contemporary ideas come about.
When creating art, there are a few elements that define that artwork. The techniques adopted, the technology adopted, the medium used, and the concept that’s adopted.
For example, contemporary techniques may include single brush strokes. Forms are created using single brush strokes. A single painting can be completed in minutes using this technique. Due to its speed, this technique has gained popularity very quickly.
Also, more and more art pieces are created using advanced software. Such software can create 2D or 3D digital artwork very quickly and the images are much more defined than a traditional artwork.
But artists who still prefer to stick to traditional painting tools such as paper or canvases still need to pick a medium to work on. As acrylic paints are water-based, non-toxic and fast drying, many artists have made it their choice of paint medium.
If you notice, the three elements which I’ve just mentioned share some similar characteristics. What seems to fit into the notion of contemporary art involves simplicity, speed and convenience.
We see more and more digital art prints because it’s so fast and convenient to produce artwork on computers. We see more and more artists turn to fast drying mediums because art pieces can be completed faster. That’s the essence of contemporary art.
As for contemporary concepts, that can be a little hard to grasp. That’s because it’s hard to classify any idea as contemporary as ideas are formless and subjective. What’s contemporary for one may not be so for another. The most convenient way of classifying concepts is to use time. For instance, any concept that’s born in the 20th Century and beyond is classified as contemporary.
So the next time you’re producing contemporary art, keep these four elements in mind. What techniques are you adopting? Are you using any modern technology for your creation? What paints will you be using? And finally, how modern are your concepts?
When you can answer these questions, you have already answered the question of how contemporary is your art.
Source by Darren WK Chow