Page 4 - World of Art Contemporary Art magazine: The 2023 Guggenheim issue
P. 4

                                                              THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN AMERICAN AND EUROPEAN
                                                              CONTEMPORARY ART
                                                              •The contemporary fine art and its main characteristics.
                                                              Contemporary fine art is the art of today, produced by living
                                                              artists in the second half of the 20th century or in the 21st
                                                              century. It is different from modern art, which refers to the art
                                                              produced between the 1860s and the 1970s. Contemporary
                                                              fine art reflects the cultural, social, and technological changes
                                                              of our time, and explores new materials, methods, concepts,
                                                              and subjects. One of the main features of contemporary fine
                                                              art is that it is conceptual. This means that contemporary
                                                              artists focus on expressing ideas or concepts through
                                                              their artworks, rather than on creating realistic or beautiful
                                                              representations of reality. Conceptual art emerged in
                                                              the 1960s as a reaction to the dominance of modern art
                                                              movements such as abstract expressionism and pop art.
                                                              Conceptual artists challenged the traditional notions of what
                                                              art is, how it is made, and what it means. Some examples
                                                              of conceptual artists are Marcel Duchamp, Joseph Beuys,
                                                              and Yoko Ono. Another characteristic of contemporary fine
                                                              art is that it is transgressive. This means that contemporary
                                                              artists cross the boundaries between art and non-art, and
                                                              question the conventions and rules of established art forms.
                                                              Transgressive art often involves shocking, provocative, or
                                                              controversial elements that challenge the norms and values of
                                                              society. Some examples of transgressive art movements are
                                                              performance art, installation art, and street art. Performance
         Alex Katz, Sunrise, 2019. Oil on linen, 126 × 96 in. (320 × 243.8 cm). Collection of   art involves live actions or events by the artist or other
         the artist. © 2022 Alex Katz / Licensed by VAGA at Artists Rights Society (ARS),
                                                              participants, such as Marina Abramovic’s endurance tests
         NY. Photo: Courtesy of the artist and Gladstone Gallery
                                                              or Yayoi Kusama’s happenings3. Installation art involves
                                                              creating immersive environments or spaces that transform
                                                              the perception of the viewer, such as Christo and Jeanne-
                                                              Claude’s wrapped monuments or Ai Weiwei’s sunflower seeds.
                                                              Street art involves creating artworks in public places, often
                                                              illegally or without permission, such as Banksy’s graffiti or
                                                              JR’s large-scale portraits. A third feature of contemporary fine
                                                              art is that it is diverse. This means that contemporary artists
                                                              come from different cultural, historical, and geographical
                                                              backgrounds, and express their unique perspectives and
                                                              experiences through their artworks. Contemporary fine art
                                                              also incorporates various media, styles, genres, and forms,
                                                              ranging from painting and sculpture to photography and

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