Conceptualism in Abstract Art


ABSTRACT Before modernity arts and crafts produced by cultures were rooted in the common societal values and traditions of practice. Modernity as a corollary of political, cultural, and scientific revolutions caused radical changes in the constitution of cultures. At the beginning of the twentieth century arts experienced radical changes in their themes and communication techniques. Scientific advances that influenced all the world intellectuals while on the one hand, elevated arts to a universal level and enriched their themes with concepts such as movement, dynamism and simplicity, on the other hand rendered artistic interpretation, criticism and education questionable. In the 1960s the moving of the epicentre of artistic prominence from the mid-Europe to the USA supported first the Minimalism and later the social Expressionism via the artistic visionaries. Abstract art that at the same time opens itself to the criticism of the ordinary man but lacks the true interpretation of the basic meaning is deplete with serious innate problems of reading and methods of teaching apposite for the age. This study encouraged by the practice-based research that is promoted in the western world during the last couple of decades dwelt upon the readability of some concepts from the samples of abstract art. Upholding an assumption that artistic concepts are related to learning and remembering and might stem from the tacit knowledge, eight national abstract art pieces were selected and re-read via the concept of space/time. In the study that adopts persuasion method, the cases were read with semantic significance. It was concluded that although the cases seemed abstract artistic endeavours they hid a latent meaning. Thus the research proposes that the teaching of painting via concepts prove possible and pose a reliable pedagogical tool.