Wednesday, 3 July 2019

Abstract Painting - Abstract ... What does the Word Mean?


Webster defines abstract as: a.considered aside from a specific instance, b.expressing a quality apart from the object or c. having only intrinsic form with little if any pictorial representation. Quite simply; taking an item and emphasizing its core fundamentalness. All three definitions quickly fit abstract painting in showing, telling, drawing and painting the very essence of the thing without actually depicting the object itself.

How does an abstract painter arrive at an abstract design? Many stated they started with a representational motif, that the motif was something readily identifiable. Chances are they dissected the motif as they say, searching for the bare bones, the very essence of the object. They expressed this essence with colorful shapes, some beautiful, some drab, and some just plain ugly.

In almost any painting the artist is building a statement. It's easy to say pretty pink flowers in a representational painting. top contemporary artists Abstract Painting - Abstract ... What does the Word Mean?

 What the abstract artist has to state must certanly be said with his/her simple means; brush marks, color and interesting shapes. Also, since color is arbitrary, color reaches the artist's whim, and may or might not be pretty and has nothing to do with the painting's success.

To produce a meaningful statement without a recognizable subject is daunting. It's not a matter of simply looking and drawing. He or she must use each of their wiles to interact us in dialog with their art, being limited, or we should say, unlimited, with unrecognizable shapes and unrelated (to the object) color. The artist must interest and talk with the viewer through form and color.

A weak, wishy washy, pretty pink flower painting says, "Weak, wishy washy pretty pink flowers!" Bright, bold colors, without form and substance in an abstract painting says, "No form and no substance!" Neither painting is successful.

So..... here we stand facing the piece of art, having no understanding of abstract art, its purpose and intention. We want to respond but we're with out a clue. So, we hesitate before the art work, we don't understand what to express, we don't answer along with or design, so, we leave saying, or at least thinking, "That artist must be nuts!" And wondering what the painting was all about. What was its purpose? Was it good art or not?

There are several folks who are of the opinion that the painting must be representational to be good art. And if they cannot see every hair on the pinnacle and every leaf on the tree, then your art is not good. That simply isn't true. You could choose the see every hair but that's not necessarily an indication of good art.

What guidelines do we have in judging abstract paintings merits? The guidelines that representational painters must follow are exactly the same for the abstract painter. The task will need to have readable values, color harmony and dominance, repetition with variety in shapes, colors and lines, all that concerns good art must also be in abstract art.

An accumulation wild colors and shapes does not always soon add up to good art in abstraction or representational art. A great abstract could be more difficult to pull off than representational art because the artist is relying on his imagination and intuition to make something meaningful and of value. (not necessarily monetary value)

In wanting to understand abstract (non-representational) art, approach it with the concept at heart to simply appreciate what is before you. Sometimes the title will give us an idea in regards to what the painting is about. That helps. Then look and observe how it affects you.

Does the color speak for you? Are you lifted up or cast down by along with? You can have some a reaction to an item of art work, it will move you in some manner, perhaps not much, perhaps a good deal. Identify what it is. Good art, whether abstract or representational, sets a mood, tells an account, however subtle, intrigues and interests the viewer, and as such, each painting should be appreciated on its own merits.

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