Thursday, January 8, 2015

Art: At the Heart of Mankind

Since the beginning of mankind, humans have attempted to demonstrate their feelings of love, life and religion by creating art. Whether it is a painting, sculpture art, architecture or cave drawings, art has been at the heart of man all along. Art has allowed us a glimpse into the life and times of those artists - viewing the world as they saw it then and as they see it now. 

As technology has progressed and techniques have been created and passed on to a new generation, art history has been divided into periods based upon those techniques and trends. Take a step back through the evolution of art through their periods, exploring their characteristics and chief artists. 

1900-1935 – Fauvism and Expressionism            
Characteristics: Harsh colors and flat surfaces (Fauvism); emotion distorting form
Chief artists:  Matisse, Kirchner, Kandinsky, Marc
Historical Event: Boxer Rebellion in China (1900); World War (1914–1918)

1905-1920 – Cubism, Futurism, Supremativism, Constructivism, De Stijl
Characteristics: Pre– and Post–World War 1 art experiments: new forms to express modern life
Chief artists:  Picasso, Braque, Leger, Boccioni, Severini, Malevich
Historical Event: Russian Revolution (1917); American women franchised (1920)

1917-1950 - Dada and Surrealism
Characteristics: Ridiculous art; painting dreams and exploring the unconscious
Chief artists:  Duchamp, DalĂ­, Ernst, Magritte, de Chirico, Kahlo
Historical Event: Disillusionment after World War I; The Great Depression (1929–1938); World War II (1939–1945) and Nazi horrors; atomic bombs dropped on Japan (1945)

1940s-1950s – Abstract Expressionism ; 1960s – Pop Art
Characteristics: Post–World War II: pure abstraction and expression without form; popular art absorbs consumerism
Chief artists:  Gorky, Pollock, de Kooning, Rothko, Warhol, Lichtenstein
Historical Event: Cold War and Vietnam War (U.S. enters 1965); U.S.S.R. suppresses Hungarian revolt (1956) Czechoslovakian revolt (1968)

1970-Present  - Postmodernism and Deconstructivism
Characteristics: Art without a center and reworking and mixing past styles
Chief artists:  Gerhard Richter, Cindy Sherman, Anselm Kiefer, Frank Gehry, Zaha Hadid
Historical Event:  Nuclear freeze movement; Cold War fizzles; Communism collapses in Eastern Europe and U.S.S.R. (1989–1991)

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