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Abstract art uses
visual language#REDIRECT Visual language Water, rabbit, deer pictographs on a replica of an Aztec Stone of the Sun. The visual language is a system of communication using visual elements. Speech as a means of communication cannot strictly be separated from the ...
of shape, form, color and line to create a composition which may exist with a degree of independence from visual references in the world.
Western art ''; by Johannes Vermeer Johannes Vermeer ( , , #Pronunciation of name, see below; October 1632 – December 1675) was a Dutch Baroque Period Painting, painter who specialized in domestic interior scenes of middle class life. During his lifetime, ...
had been, from the
Renaissance The Renaissance ( , ) , from , with the same meanings. is a period Period may refer to: Common uses * Era, a length or span of time * Full stop (or period), a punctuation mark Arts, entertainment, and media * Period (music), a concept in ...

Renaissance
up to the middle of the 19th century, underpinned by the logic of perspective and an attempt to reproduce an illusion of visible reality. By the end of the 19th century many artists felt a need to create a new kind of art which would encompass the fundamental changes taking place in
technology Technology ("science of craft", from Greek#REDIRECT Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hellenic Republic, is a country located in Southeast Europe. I ...

technology
,
science Science () is a systematic enterprise that builds and organizes knowledge Knowledge is a familiarity or awareness, of someone or something, such as facts A fact is something that is truth, true. The usual test for a statement of ...

science
and
philosophy Philosophy (from , ) is the study of general and fundamental questions, such as those about Metaphysics, existence, reason, Epistemology, knowledge, Ethics, values, Philosophy of mind, mind, and Philosophy of language, language. Such questio ...

philosophy
. The sources from which individual artists drew their theoretical arguments were diverse, and reflected the social and intellectual preoccupations in all areas of Western culture at that time. Abstract art, non-figurative art, non-objective art, and non-representational art, are closely related terms. They are similar, but perhaps not of identical meaning. Abstraction indicates a departure from reality in depiction of
image An image (from la, imago) is an artifact that depicts visual perception Visual perception is the ability to interpret the surrounding environment (biophysical), environment through photopic vision (daytime vision), color vision, sco ...

image
ry in art. This departure from accurate representation can be slight, partial, or complete. Abstraction exists along a continuum. Even art that aims for verisimilitude of the highest degree can be said to be abstract, at least theoretically, since perfect representation is impossible. Artwork which takes liberties, altering for instance color and form in ways that are conspicuous, can be said to be partially abstract. Total abstraction bears no trace of any reference to anything recognizable. In
geometric abstraction Black Square'', 1915, oil on linen, 79.5 x 79.5 cm, Tretyakov Gallery">Black_Square_(painting).html" ;"title="Kazimir Malevich, ''Black Square (painting)">Black Square'', 1915, oil on linen, 79.5 x 79.5 cm, Tretyakov Gallery, Moscow Geometric ab ...
, for instance, one is unlikely to find references to naturalistic entities.
Figurative art Figurative art, sometimes written as figurativism, describes art Art is a diverse range of (products of) human activities involving creative imagination to express technical proficiency, beauty, emotional power, or conceptual ideas. The ...
and total abstraction are almost
mutually exclusive In logic and probability theory, two events (or propositions) are mutually exclusive or disjoint if they cannot both occur at the same time. A clear example is the set of outcomes of a single coin toss, which can result in either heads or tails, ...
. But figurative and representational (or realistic) art often contain partial abstraction. Both geometric abstraction and lyrical abstraction are often totally abstract. Among the very numerous
art movements An art movement is a tendency or style in art with a specific common philosophy or goal, followed by a group of artists during a specific period of time, (usually a few months, years or decades) or, at least, with the heyday of the movement defin ...
that embody partial abstraction would be for instance
fauvism Fauvism /ˈfoʊvɪzm̩/ is the style of ''les Fauves'' (French for "the wild beasts"), a group of early 20th-century modern art Modern art includes artistic work produced during the period extending roughly from the 1860s to the 1970s, and d ...
in which color is conspicuously and deliberately altered vis-a-vis reality, and
cubism Cubism is an early-20th-century avant-garde The avant-garde (; In 'advance guard' or 'vanguard', literally 'fore-guard') are people or works that are experimental, Wikt:radical#Adjective, radical, or unorthodox with respect to The arts, art ...
, which alters the forms of the real life entities depicted.


Abstraction in early art and many cultures

Much of the art of earlier cultures – signs and marks on pottery, textiles, and inscriptions and paintings on rock – used simple, geometric and linear forms which might have had a symbolic or decorative purpose. It is at this level of visual meaning that abstract art communicates. One can enjoy the beauty of
Chinese calligraphy Chinese calligraphy is the writing of Chinese characters as an art form, combining purely visual art and interpretation of the literary meaning. This type of expression has been widely practiced in China and has been generally held in high este ...
or
Islamic calligraphy Islamic calligraphy is the artistic practice of handwriting Handwriting is the writing Writing is a medium of human communication that involves the representation of a language with written symbols. Writing systems are not themselves ...

Islamic calligraphy
without being able to read it. In Chinese painting, abstraction can be traced to the
Tang dynasty The Tang dynasty (, ; ), or Tang Empire, was an imperial dynasty of China that ruled from 618 to 907, with an interregnum An interregnum (plural interregna or interregnums) is a period of discontinuity or "gap" in a government, organiza ...
painter Wang Mo (王墨), who is credited to have invented the splashed-ink painting style. While none of his paintings remain, this style is clearly seen in some
Song Dynasty The Song dynasty (; ; 960–1279) was an imperial dynasty of China that began in 960 and lasted until 1279. The dynasty was founded by Emperor Taizu of Song Emperor Taizu of Song (21 March 927 – 14 November 976), personal name Zhao Kua ...
Paintings. The
Chan buddhist Chan (; of ), from Sanskrit ''dhyāna in Buddhism, dhyāna'' (meaning "meditation" or "meditative state"), is a Chinese school of Mahayana, Mahāyāna Buddhism. It developed in China from the 6th century Common Era, CE onwards, becoming dom ...
painter
Liang Kai Liang Kai (; ''c''. 1140 - ''c''. 1210) was a Chinese painter of the Southern Song Dynasty. He was also known as Madman Liang because of his very informal pictures. He was born in Shandong and worked in Lin An (later Hangzhou). He is known to have ...
(梁楷, c. 1140–1210) applied the style to figure painting in his "Immortal in splashed ink" in which accurate representation is sacrificed to enhance spontaneity linked to the non-rational mind of the enlightened. A late Song painter named Yu Jian, adept to
Tiantai buddhism Tiantai or T'ien-t'ai () is a school of Buddhism in China, Japan, Korea, and Vietnam that reveres the ''Lotus Sutra'' as the highest teaching in Buddhism. In Japan the school is known as Tendai, in Korea as Cheontae, and in Vietnam as ''Thiên t ...
, created a series of splashed ink landscapes that eventually inspired many Japanese Zen painters. His paintings show heavily misty mountains in which the shapes of the objects are barely visible and extremely simplified. This type of painting was continued by Sesshu Toyo in his later years. Another instance of abstraction in Chinese painting is seen in Zhu Derun'
''Cosmic Circle''
On the left side of this painting is a pine tree in rocky soil, its branches laced with vines that extend in a disorderly manner to the right side of the painting in which a perfect circle (probably made with help of a compass) floats in the void. The painting is a reflection of the
Daoist Taoism (), or Daoism (), is a philosophical and spiritual tradition of China, Chinese origin which emphasizes living in harmony with the ''Tao'' (, Taoism#Spelling and pronunciation, or ''Dao''). In Taoism, the ''Tao'' is the source, pattern ...
metaphysics in which chaos and reality are complementary stages of the regular course of nature. In Tokugawa Japan, some Zen monk-painters created
Enso
Enso
, a circle who represents the absolute enlightenment. Usually made in one spontaneous brush stroke, it became the paradigm of the minimalist aesthetic that guided part of the Zen painting.


19th century

Patronage from the church diminished and private patronage from the public became more capable of providing a livelihood for artists. Three
art movement An art movement is a tendency or style in art with a specific common philosophy or goal, followed by a group of artists during a specific period of time, (usually a few months, years or decades) or, at least, with the heyday of the movement defin ...
s which contributed to the development of abstract art were
Romanticism Romanticism (also known as the Romantic era) was an artistic, literary, musical, and intellectual movement that originated in Europe towards the end of the 18th century, and in most areas was at its peak in the approximate period from 1800 to ...
,
Impressionism Impressionism is a 19th-century art movement An art movement is a tendency or style in art with a specific common philosophy or goal, followed by a group of artists during a specific period of time, (usually a few months, years or decades) or ...

Impressionism
and
Expressionism Expressionism is a modernist , Solomon Guggenheim Museum 1946–1959 Modernism is both a philosophy, philosophical movement and an art movement that arose from broad transformations in Western world, Western society during the late 19th and ...
. Artistic independence for artists was advanced during the 19th century. An ''objective interest in what is seen'', can be discerned from the paintings of
John Constable John Constable (; 11 June 1776 – 31 March 1837) was an English landscape painter in the Romantic Romantic may refer to: Genres and eras * The Romantic era, an artistic, literary, musical and intellectual movement of the 18th and 19th centu ...

John Constable
,
J M W Turner Joseph Mallord William Turner (23 April 177519 December 1851), known in his time as William Turner, was an English Romanticism, Romantic painter, Printmaking, printmaker and Watercolor painting, watercolourist. He is known for his expressive co ...
,
Camille Corot Jean-Baptiste-Camille Corot ( , , ; July 16, 1796 – February 22, 1875) was a French landscape and portrait painter as well as a printmaker 300px, Rembrandt, ''Self-portrait'', etching">Self-portrait.html" ;"title="Rembrandt, ''S ...
and from them to the Impressionists who continued the ''
plein air ''En plein air'' (; French language, French for "outdoors"), or ''plein air'' painting, is the act of painting outdoors. This method contrasts with studio painting or academic rules that might create a predetermined look.The theory of 'En plein ...
'' painting of the Barbizon school. Early intimations of a new art had been made by
James McNeill Whistler James Abbott McNeill Whistler (; July 11, 1834July 17, 1903) was an American painter active during the American Gilded Age In History of the United States, United States history, the Gilded Age was an era that occurred during the late 19th ...

James McNeill Whistler
who, in his painting '' Nocturne in Black and Gold: The falling Rocket'', (1872), placed greater emphasis on visual sensation than the depiction of objects. Even earlier than that, with her 'spirit' drawings,
Georgiana Houghton Georgiana Houghton (1814–1884) was a British artist and spiritualist Mediumship, medium. Biography Houghton was born in Las Palmas de Gran Canaria but later moved to London. She produced her first Abstract art, abstract works, then referred to a ...

Georgiana Houghton
's choice to work with abstract shapes correlate with the unnatural nature of her subject, in a time when abstraction” isn’t yet a concept (she organized an exhibit in 1871).
Expressionist Expressionism is a modernist , Solomon Guggenheim Museum 1946–1959 Modernism is both a philosophy, philosophical movement and an art movement that arose from broad transformations in Western world, Western society during the late 19th and ...
painters explored the bold use of paint surface, drawing distortions and exaggerations, and intense color. Expressionists produced emotionally charged paintings that were reactions to and perceptions of contemporary experience; and reactions to
Impressionism Impressionism is a 19th-century art movement An art movement is a tendency or style in art with a specific common philosophy or goal, followed by a group of artists during a specific period of time, (usually a few months, years or decades) or ...

Impressionism
and other more conservative directions of late 19th-century painting. The Expressionists drastically changed the emphasis on subject matter in favor of the portrayal of psychological states of being. Although artists like
Edvard Munch Edvard Munch ( , ; 12 December 1863 – 23 January 1944) was a Norwegian painter Painting is the practice of applying paint Paint is any pigmented liquid, liquefiable, or solid mastic composition that, after application to a subs ...

Edvard Munch
and
James Ensor James Sidney Edouard, Baron Ensor (13 April 1860 – 19 November 1949) was a Belgian painter and printmaker 300px, Rembrandt, ''Self-portrait'', etching">Self-portrait.html" ;"title="Rembrandt, ''Self-portrait">Rembrandt, ''Self-portrait ...
drew influences principally from the work of the Post-Impressionists they were instrumental to the advent of abstraction in the 20th century.
Paul Cézanne Paul Cézanne ( , , ; ; 19 January 1839 – 22 October 1906) was a French artist and Post-Impressionist painter whose work laid the foundations of the transition from the 19th-century conception of artistic endeavour to a new and radically di ...

Paul Cézanne
had begun as an Impressionist but his aim – to make a logical construction of reality based on a view from a single point, with modulated color in flat areas – became the basis of a new visual art, later to be developed into
Cubism Cubism is an early-20th-century avant-garde The avant-garde (; In 'advance guard' or 'vanguard', literally 'fore-guard') are people or works that are experimental, Wikt:radical#Adjective, radical, or unorthodox with respect to The arts, art ...
by
Georges Braque Georges Braque ( , ; 13 May 1882 – 31 August 1963) was a major 20th-century French painter This is a list of French people, French painters sorted alphabetically and by the century in which the painter was most active. alphabetically ...
and
Pablo Picasso Pablo Ruiz Picasso (25 October 1881 – 8 April 1973) was a Spanish painter, sculptor, printmaker 300px, Rembrandt, ''Self-portrait'', etching">Self-portrait.html" ;"title="Rembrandt, ''Self-portrait">Rembrandt, ''Self-portrait'', et ...

Pablo Picasso
. Additionally in the late 19th century in Eastern Europe
mysticism Mysticism is popularly known as becoming one with God or the Absolute, but may refer to any kind of ecstasy Ecstasy may refer to: * Ecstasy (emotion), a trance or trance-like state in which a person transcends normal consciousness * Religious ...
and early
modernist Modernism is both a philosophical movement A philosophical movement refers to the phenomenon defined by a group of philosophers A philosopher is someone who practices philosophy Philosophy (from , ) is the study of general and ...
religious philosophy as expressed by
theosophist Theosophy is a religion Religion is a social system, social-cultural system of designated religious behaviour, behaviors and practices, morality, morals, beliefs, worldviews, religious text, texts, shrine, sanctified places, prophecy, proph ...
Mme. Blavatsky
Mme. Blavatsky
had a profound impact on pioneer
geometric Geometry (from the grc, γεωμετρία; '' geo-'' "earth", '' -metron'' "measurement") is, with arithmetic, one of the oldest branches of mathematics. It is concerned with properties of space that are related with distance, shape, size, ...
artists like
Hilma af Klint Hilma af Klint (; October 26, 1862 – October 21, 1944) was a Sweden, Swedish artist and mysticism, mystic whose paintings were the first Western abstract art known to the current art community. A considerable body of her abstract work predates t ...

Hilma af Klint
and
Wassily Kandinsky Wassily Wassilyevich Kandinsky (; rus, Василий Васильевич Кандинский, Vasiliy Vasilyevich Kandinskiy, vɐˈsʲilʲɪj vɐˈsʲilʲjɪvʲɪtɕ kɐnʲˈdʲinskʲɪj;  – 13 December 1944) was a Russian painter a ...
. The mystical teaching of
Georges Gurdjieff
Georges Gurdjieff
and P.D. Ouspensky also had an important influence on the early formations of the geometric abstract styles of
Piet Mondrian Pieter Cornelis Mondriaan (), after 1906 Piet Mondrian (, also , ; 7 March 1872 – 1 February 1944), was a Dutch painter and art theoretician who is regarded as one of the great artists of the 20th century. He is known for being one of the pion ...
and his colleagues in the early 20th century. The
spiritualism Spiritualism is a new religious movement based on the belief that the spirits of the dead exist and have both the ability and the inclination to communicate with the living. The afterlife, or the "Spirit world (Spiritualism), spirit world", is s ...
also inspired the abstract art of
Kasimir Malevich , birth_date = , birth_place = Kiev Governorate of Russian Empire , death_date = , death_place = Leningrad, Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic, Russian SFSR, Soviet Union , nationality = Russian Empire ...
and
František Kupka František Kupka (23 September 1871 – 24 June 1957), also known as ''Frank Kupka'' or ''François Kupka,'' was a Czech Czech may refer to: * Anything from or related to the Czech Republic The Czech Republic (; cs, Česká republika ) ...
.


20th century

Post-Impressionism Post-Impressionism (also spelled Postimpressionism) was a predominantly French art movement that developed roughly between 1886 and 1905, from the last Impressionism, Impressionist exhibition to the birth of Fauvism. Post-Impressionism emerged as ...
as practiced by
Paul Gauguin Eugène Henri Paul Gauguin (, ; ; 7 June 1848 – 8 May 1903) was a French Post-Impressionist artist. Unappreciated until after his death, Gauguin is now recognized for his experimental use of color and Synthetist style that were distinct fro ...
,
Georges Seurat Georges Pierre Seurat ( , , ; 2 December 1859 – 29 March 1891) was a French post-Impressionist artist. He is best known for devising the painting techniques known as chromoluminarism and pointillism Pointillism (, ) is a technique of pai ...
,
Vincent van Gogh Vincent Willem van Gogh (; 30 March 185329 July 1890) was a Dutch Post-Impressionist painter who posthumously became one of the most famous and influential figures in Western art ''; by Johannes Vermeer Johannes Vermeer ( , , #Pronun ...
and
Paul Cézanne Paul Cézanne ( , , ; ; 19 January 1839 – 22 October 1906) was a French artist and Post-Impressionist painter whose work laid the foundations of the transition from the 19th-century conception of artistic endeavour to a new and radically di ...

Paul Cézanne
had an enormous impact on
20th-century art Twentieth-century art—and what it became as modern art Modern art includes artistic work produced during the period extending roughly from the 1860s to the 1970s, and denotes the styles and philosophies of the art produced during that era. ...
and led to the advent of 20th-century abstraction. The heritage of painters like Van Gogh, Cézanne, Gauguin, and Seurat was essential for the development of
modern art Modern art includes artistic work produced during the period extending roughly from the 1860s to the 1970s, and denotes the styles and philosophies of the art produced during that era. The term is usually associated with art in which the tradi ...
. At the beginning of the 20th century
Henri Matisse Henri Émile Benoît Matisse (; 31 December 1869 – 3 November 1954) was a French artist, known for both his use of colour and his fluid and original draughtsmanship. He was a drawing, draughtsman, printmaking, printmaker, and sculpture, scul ...

Henri Matisse
and several other young artists including the pre-cubist
Georges Braque Georges Braque ( , ; 13 May 1882 – 31 August 1963) was a major 20th-century French painter This is a list of French people, French painters sorted alphabetically and by the century in which the painter was most active. alphabetically ...
,
André Derain André Derain (, ; 10 June 1880 – 8 September 1954) was a French artist, painter, sculptor and co-founder of Fauvism Fauvism /ˈfoʊvɪzm̩/ is the style of ''les Fauves'' ( French for "the wild beasts"), a group of early 20th-century modern art ...
,
Raoul Dufy Raoul Dufy (; 3 June 1877 – 23 March 1953) was a French Fauvist painter, brother of Jean Dufy. He developed a colorful, decorative style that became fashionable for designs of ceramic art, ceramics and textiles, as well as decorative schemes f ...
and
Maurice de Vlaminck Maurice de Vlaminck (4 April 1876 – 11 October 1958) was a French Painting, painter. Along with André Derain and Henri Matisse he is considered one of the principal figures in the Fauvism, Fauve movement, a group of modern artists who from ...
revolutionized the Paris art world with "wild", multi-colored, expressive landscapes and figure paintings that the critics called
Fauvism Fauvism /ˈfoʊvɪzm̩/ is the style of ''les Fauves'' (French for "the wild beasts"), a group of early 20th-century modern art Modern art includes artistic work produced during the period extending roughly from the 1860s to the 1970s, and d ...
. With his expressive use of color and his free and imaginative drawing Henri Matisse comes very close to pure abstraction in ''French Window at Collioure'' (1914), '' View of Notre-Dame'' (1914), and '' The Yellow Curtain'' from 1915. The raw language of color as developed by the Fauves directly influenced another pioneer of abstraction,
Wassily Kandinsky Wassily Wassilyevich Kandinsky (; rus, Василий Васильевич Кандинский, Vasiliy Vasilyevich Kandinskiy, vɐˈsʲilʲɪj vɐˈsʲilʲjɪvʲɪtɕ kɐnʲˈdʲinskʲɪj;  – 13 December 1944) was a Russian painter a ...
. Although
Cubism Cubism is an early-20th-century avant-garde The avant-garde (; In 'advance guard' or 'vanguard', literally 'fore-guard') are people or works that are experimental, Wikt:radical#Adjective, radical, or unorthodox with respect to The arts, art ...
ultimately depends upon subject matter, it became, along with
Fauvism Fauvism /ˈfoʊvɪzm̩/ is the style of ''les Fauves'' (French for "the wild beasts"), a group of early 20th-century modern art Modern art includes artistic work produced during the period extending roughly from the 1860s to the 1970s, and d ...
, the art movement that directly opened the door to abstraction in the 20th century.
Pablo Picasso Pablo Ruiz Picasso (25 October 1881 – 8 April 1973) was a Spanish painter, sculptor, printmaker 300px, Rembrandt, ''Self-portrait'', etching">Self-portrait.html" ;"title="Rembrandt, ''Self-portrait">Rembrandt, ''Self-portrait'', et ...

Pablo Picasso
made his first
cubist Cubism is an early-20th-century avant-garde The avant-garde (; In 'advance guard' or ' vanguard', literally 'fore-guard') are people or works that are experimental, radical, or unorthodox with respect to art, culture, or society.John Picch ...
paintings based on Cézanne's idea that all depiction of nature can be reduced to three solids:
cube In geometry Geometry (from the grc, γεωμετρία; ' "earth", ' "measurement") is, with , one of the oldest branches of . It is concerned with properties of space that are related with distance, shape, size, and relative position ...

cube
,
sphere A sphere (from Greek#REDIRECT Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hellenic Republic, is a country located in Southeast Europe. Its population is appr ...

sphere
and
cone A cone is a three-dimensional Three-dimensional space (also: 3-space or, rarely, tri-dimensional space) is a geometric setting in which three values (called parameter A parameter (from the Ancient Greek language, Ancient Greek wikt:πα ...

cone
. With the painting ''
Les Demoiselles d'Avignon ''Les Demoiselles d'Avignon'' (''The Young Ladies of Avignon'', originally titled ''The Brothel of Avignon'') is a large oil painting created in 1907 by the Spanish artist Pablo Picasso. The work, part of the permanent collection of the Museum of ...
'' (1907), Picasso dramatically created a new and radical picture depicting a raw and primitive brothel scene with five prostitutes, violently painted women, reminiscent of African tribal masks and his own new
Cubist Cubism is an early-20th-century avant-garde The avant-garde (; In 'advance guard' or ' vanguard', literally 'fore-guard') are people or works that are experimental, radical, or unorthodox with respect to art, culture, or society.John Picch ...
inventions. Analytic cubism was jointly developed by Pablo Picasso and
Georges Braque Georges Braque ( , ; 13 May 1882 – 31 August 1963) was a major 20th-century French painter This is a list of French people, French painters sorted alphabetically and by the century in which the painter was most active. alphabetically ...
, from about 1908 through 1912. Analytic cubism, the first clear manifestation of cubism, was followed by Synthetic cubism, practiced by Braque, Picasso,
Fernand Léger Joseph Fernand Henri Léger (; February 4, 1881 – August 17, 1955) was a French painter Painting is the practice of applying paint Paint is any pigmented liquid, liquefiable, or solid mastic composition that, after application to a ...

Fernand Léger
,
Juan Gris José Victoriano (Carmelo Carlos) González-Pérez (23 March 1887 – 11 May 1927), better known as Juan Gris (; ), was a Spanish painter born in Madrid Madrid ( , ) is the capital and most populous city of Spain. The city has almost 3.4&nbs ...

Juan Gris
,
Albert Gleizes Albert Gleizes (; 8 December 1881 – 23 June 1953) was a major 20th-century French artist, theoretician, philosopher, a self-proclaimed founder of and an influence on the . Albert Gleizes and wrote the first major treatise on Cubism, ', 1912. ...
,
Marcel Duchamp Henri-Robert-Marcel Duchamp (; ; 28 July 1887 – 2 October 1968) was a French Americans, French-American painter, sculptor, chess player, and writer whose work is associated with Cubism, Dada, and conceptual art. Duchamp is commonly regarded, a ...

Marcel Duchamp
and others into the 1920s. Synthetic cubism is characterized by the introduction of different textures, surfaces,
collage Collage (, from the french: coller, "to glue" or "to stick together";) is a technique of art creation, primarily used in the visual arts, but in music too, by which art results from an Assemblage (art), assemblage of different forms, thus creat ...

collage
elements,
papier collé ''Papier collé'' (French: ''pasted paper'' or ''paper cut outs'') is a type of collage and collaging technique in which paper is adhered to a flat mount. The difference between collage and papier collé is that the latter refers exclusively to th ...
and a large variety of merged subject matter. The collage artists like
Kurt Schwitters Kurt Hermann Eduard Karl Julius Schwitters (20 June 1887 – 8 January 1948) was a German artist who was born in Hanover Hanover (; german: Hannover ; nds, Hannober) is the capital and largest city of the German States of Germany, state of Lo ...
and
Man Ray Man Ray (born Emmanuel Radnitzky; August 27, 1890 – November 18, 1976) was an American visual artist who spent most of his career in . He was a significant contributor to the and movements, although his ties to each were informal. He p ...
and others taking the clue from
Cubism Cubism is an early-20th-century avant-garde The avant-garde (; In 'advance guard' or 'vanguard', literally 'fore-guard') are people or works that are experimental, Wikt:radical#Adjective, radical, or unorthodox with respect to The arts, art ...
were instrumental to the development of the movement called
Dada Dada () or Dadaism was an art movement An art movement is a tendency or style in art with a specific common philosophy or goal, followed by a group of artists during a specific period of time, (usually a few months, years or decades) or, at ...

Dada
. The Italian poet
Filippo Tommaso Marinetti Filippo Tommaso Emilio Marinetti (; 22 December 1876 – 2 December 1944) was an Italian poet, editor, art theorist, and founder of the Futurist Futurists are people whose specialty or interest is futurology Futures studies, futures resear ...

Filippo Tommaso Marinetti
published the
Manifesto of Futurism The ''Manifesto of Futurism'' ( Italian: ''Manifesto del Futurismo'') is a manifesto written by the Italians, Italian poetry, poet Filippo Tommaso Marinetti and published in 1909. Marinetti expresses an artistic philosophy called Futurism that wa ...

Manifesto of Futurism
in 1909, which later inspired artists such as Carlo Carra in ''Painting of Sounds, Noises and Smells'' and
Umberto Boccioni Umberto Boccioni (, ; 19 October 1882 – 17 August 1916) was an influential Italian painter and sculptor. He helped shape the revolutionary aesthetic of the Futurism movement as one of its principal figures. Despite his short life, his approach to ...

Umberto Boccioni
''Train in Motion'', 1911, to a further stage of abstraction that would, along with
Cubism Cubism is an early-20th-century avant-garde The avant-garde (; In 'advance guard' or 'vanguard', literally 'fore-guard') are people or works that are experimental, Wikt:radical#Adjective, radical, or unorthodox with respect to The arts, art ...
, profoundly influenced art movements throughout Europe. During the 1912 Salon de la
Section d'Or , 1911, '' La Chasse (the Hunt)'', oil on canvas, 123.2 x 99 cm. Published in '' L'Intransigeant'', 10 October 1911, ''The Cubist Painters, Aesthetic Meditations, Les Peintres Cubistes'' 1913, by G. Apollinaire, and Au Salon d'Automne', Revue d'Eur ...
, where
František Kupka František Kupka (23 September 1871 – 24 June 1957), also known as ''Frank Kupka'' or ''François Kupka,'' was a Czech Czech may refer to: * Anything from or related to the Czech Republic The Czech Republic (; cs, Česká republika ) ...
exhibited the abstract painting ''Amorpha, Fugue en deux couleurs'' (''Fugue in Two Colors'') (1912), the poet
Guillaume Apollinaire Guillaume Apollinaire (; 26 August 1880 – 9 November 1918) was a French poet, playwright, short story writer, novelist, and art critic An art critic is a person who is specialized in analyzing, interpreting, and evaluating art. Their written ...

Guillaume Apollinaire
named the work of several artists including
Robert Delaunay Robert Delaunay (12 April 1885 – 25 October 1941) was a French artist who, with his wife Sonia Delaunay and others, co-founded the Orphism (art), Orphism art movement, noted for its use of strong colours and geometric shapes. His later works wer ...
, Orphism. He defined it as, "the art of painting new structures out of elements that have not been borrowed from the visual sphere, but had been created entirely by the artist...it is a pure art." Since the turn of the century, cultural connections between artists of the major European cities had become extremely active as they strove to create an art form equal to the high aspirations of
modernism Modernism is both a philosophical movement A philosophical movement refers to the phenomenon defined by a group of philosophers A philosopher is someone who practices philosophy Philosophy (from , ) is the study of general and ...
. Ideas were able to cross-fertilize by means of artist's books, exhibitions and
manifestos A manifesto is a published declaration of the intentions, motives, or views of the issuer, be it an individual, group, political party or government. A manifesto usually accepts a previously published opinion or public consensus or promotes a n ...
so that many sources were open to experimentation and discussion, and formed a basis for a diversity of modes of abstraction. The following extract from ''The World Backwards'' gives some impression of the inter-connectedness of culture at the time: "
David Burliuk David Davidovich Burliuk ( rus, links=no, Давид Давидович Бурлюк; 21 July 1882 – 15 January 1967) was a Russian-language poet, artist, publicist and book illustrator associated with the Futurism (art), Futurist, Neo-Primit ...
's knowledge of modern art movements must have been extremely up-to-date, for the second Knave of Diamonds exhibition, held in January 1912 (in Moscow) included not only paintings sent from Munich, but some members of the German
Die Brücke Die Brücke (The Bridge) was a group of German expressionist artists formed in Dresden Dresden (, ; wen, label=Sorbian languages, Upper and Lower Sorbian, Drježdźany) is the capital city of the Germany, German States of Germany, state of ...
group, while from Paris came work by
Robert Delaunay Robert Delaunay (12 April 1885 – 25 October 1941) was a French artist who, with his wife Sonia Delaunay and others, co-founded the Orphism (art), Orphism art movement, noted for its use of strong colours and geometric shapes. His later works wer ...
,
Henri Matisse Henri Émile Benoît Matisse (; 31 December 1869 – 3 November 1954) was a French artist, known for both his use of colour and his fluid and original draughtsmanship. He was a drawing, draughtsman, printmaking, printmaker, and sculpture, scul ...

Henri Matisse
and
Fernand Léger Joseph Fernand Henri Léger (; February 4, 1881 – August 17, 1955) was a French painter Painting is the practice of applying paint Paint is any pigmented liquid, liquefiable, or solid mastic composition that, after application to a ...

Fernand Léger
, as well as Picasso. During the Spring David Burliuk gave two lectures on cubism and planned a polemical publication, which the Knave of Diamonds was to finance. He went abroad in May and came back determined to rival the almanac ''
Der Blaue Reiter ''Der Blaue Reiter'' (The Blue Rider) was a group of artists united in rejection of the Neue Künstlervereinigung München in Munich, Germany. The group was founded by a number of Russian diaspora, Russian emigrants, including Wassily Kandinsk ...
'' which had emerged from the printers while he was in Germany". From 1909 to 1913 many experimental works in the search for this 'pure art' had been created by a number of artists:
Francis Picabia Francis Picabia (: born Francis-Marie Martinez de Picabia; 22January 1879 – 30November 1953) was a French avant-garde painter, poet and typographist. After experimenting with Impressionism and Pointillism, Picabia became associated with Cubism. ...

Francis Picabia
painted '' Caoutchouc'', c. 1909, ''
The Spring ''The Spring'' (or ''La Source'') is a large oil painting created in 1912 by the French artist Francis Picabia Francis Picabia (: born Francis-Marie Martinez de Picabia; 22January 1879 – 30November 1953) was a French avant-garde painter, po ...

The Spring
'', 1912, ''Dances at the Spring'' and ''The Procession, Seville'', 1912;
Wassily Kandinsky Wassily Wassilyevich Kandinsky (; rus, Василий Васильевич Кандинский, Vasiliy Vasilyevich Kandinskiy, vɐˈsʲilʲɪj vɐˈsʲilʲjɪvʲɪtɕ kɐnʲˈdʲinskʲɪj;  – 13 December 1944) was a Russian painter a ...
painted ''Untitled (First Abstract Watercolor)'', 1913, ''Improvisation 21A'', the ''Impression'' series, and ''Picture with a Circle'' (1911);
František Kupka František Kupka (23 September 1871 – 24 June 1957), also known as ''Frank Kupka'' or ''François Kupka,'' was a Czech Czech may refer to: * Anything from or related to the Czech Republic The Czech Republic (; cs, Česká republika ) ...
had painted the Orphist works, ''Discs of Newton'' (Study for ''Fugue in Two Colors''), 1912 and ''Amorpha, Fugue en deux couleurs'' (''Fugue in Two Colors''), 1912;
Robert Delaunay Robert Delaunay (12 April 1885 – 25 October 1941) was a French artist who, with his wife Sonia Delaunay and others, co-founded the Orphism (art), Orphism art movement, noted for its use of strong colours and geometric shapes. His later works wer ...
painted a series entitled ''Simultaneous Windows'' and ''Formes Circulaires, Soleil n°2'' (1912–13);
Léopold Survage Léopold Frédéric Léopoldowitsch Survage (31 July 1879 – 31 October 1968) was a French painter of Finnish origin. Trained in Moscow, he identified with the Russian avant-garde before moving to Paris, where he shared a studio with Amedeo Modigli ...
created ''Colored Rhythm'' (Study for the film), 1913;
Piet Mondrian Pieter Cornelis Mondriaan (), after 1906 Piet Mondrian (, also , ; 7 March 1872 – 1 February 1944), was a Dutch painter and art theoretician who is regarded as one of the great artists of the 20th century. He is known for being one of the pion ...
, painted ''Tableau No. 1'' and ''Composition No. 11'', 1913. And the search continued: The Rayist (Luchizm) drawings of
Natalia Goncharova Natalia Sergeevna Goncharova ( rus, Ната́лья Серге́евна Гончаро́ва, p=nɐˈtalʲjə sʲɪrˈɡʲe(j)ɪvnə ɡənʲtɕɪˈrovə; July 3, 1881October 17, 1962) was a Russia Russia (russian: link=no, Россия, , ...
and
Mikhail Larionov Mikhail Fyodorovich Larionov (Russian language, Russian: Михаи́л Фёдорович Ларио́нов; June 3, 1881 – May 10, 1964) was an avant-garde Russian painter who worked with radical exhibitors and pioneered the first approac ...
, used lines like rays of light to make a construction.
Kasimir Malevich , birth_date = , birth_place = Kiev Governorate of Russian Empire , death_date = , death_place = Leningrad, Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic, Russian SFSR, Soviet Union , nationality = Russian Empire ...
completed his first entirely abstract work, the
Suprematist Suprematism (russian: Супремати́зм) is an art movement focused on basic geometric forms, such as circles, squares, lines, and rectangles, painted in a limited range of colors. It was founded by Kazimir Malevich in Russia, and announced ...
, '' Black Square'', in 1915. Another of the Suprematist group'
Liubov Popova Lyubov Sergeyevna Popova (russian: Любо́вь Серге́евна Попо́ва; April 24, 1889 – May 25, 1924) was a Russian avant-garde . Natalia Goncharova Natalia Sergeevna Goncharova ( rus, Ната́лья Серге́евна Г ...
, created the Architectonic Constructions and Spatial Force Constructions between 1916 and 1921.
Piet Mondrian Pieter Cornelis Mondriaan (), after 1906 Piet Mondrian (, also , ; 7 March 1872 – 1 February 1944), was a Dutch painter and art theoretician who is regarded as one of the great artists of the 20th century. He is known for being one of the pion ...
was evolving his abstract language, of horizontal and vertical lines with rectangles of color, between 1915 and 1919,
Neo-Plasticism ''De Stijl'' (; ), Dutch language, Dutch for "The Style", also known as Neoplasticism, was a Dutch art movement founded in 1917 in Leiden. De Stijl consisted of artists and architects. In a narrower sense, the term ''De Stijl'' is used to ref ...
was the aesthetic which Mondrian, Theo van Doesburg and other in the group
De Stijl ''De Stijl'' (; ), Dutch Dutch commonly refers to: * Something of, from, or related to the Netherlands * Dutch people () * Dutch language () *Dutch language , spoken in Belgium (also referred as ''flemish'') Dutch may also refer to:" Cast ...
intended to reshape the environment of the future.


Music

As visual art becomes more abstract, it develops some characteristics of music: an art form which uses the abstract elements of sound and divisions of time.
Wassily Kandinsky Wassily Wassilyevich Kandinsky (; rus, Василий Васильевич Кандинский, Vasiliy Vasilyevich Kandinskiy, vɐˈsʲilʲɪj vɐˈsʲilʲjɪvʲɪtɕ kɐnʲˈdʲinskʲɪj;  – 13 December 1944) was a Russian painter a ...
, himself an amateur musician, was inspired by the possibility of marks and associative color ''resounding in the soul.'' The idea had been put forward by
Charles Baudelaire Charles Pierre Baudelaire (, ; ; 9 April 1821 – 31 August 1867) was a French poet List of poets French poetry, who have written in the French language: A * Louise-Victorine Ackermann (1813–1890) * Adam de la Halle (v.1250 – v.1285) * ...

Charles Baudelaire
, that all our senses respond to various stimuli but the senses are connected at a deeper aesthetic level. Closely related to this, is the idea that art has ''The spiritual dimension'' and can transcend 'every-day' experience, reaching a spiritual plane. The
Theosophical Society The Theosophical Society, founded in 1875, is a worldwide body with the aim to advance the ideas of Theosophy in continuation of previous Theosophists, especially the Greek and Alexandrian Neo-Platonic philosophers dating back to 3rd century AD. ...

Theosophical Society
popularized the ancient wisdom of the sacred books of India and China in the early years of the century. It was in this context that
Piet Mondrian Pieter Cornelis Mondriaan (), after 1906 Piet Mondrian (, also , ; 7 March 1872 – 1 February 1944), was a Dutch painter and art theoretician who is regarded as one of the great artists of the 20th century. He is known for being one of the pion ...
, Wassily Kandinsky,
Hilma af Klint Hilma af Klint (; October 26, 1862 – October 21, 1944) was a Sweden, Swedish artist and mysticism, mystic whose paintings were the first Western abstract art known to the current art community. A considerable body of her abstract work predates t ...

Hilma af Klint
and other artists working towards an 'objectless state' became interested in the occult as a way of creating an 'inner' object. The universal and timeless shapes found in
geometry Geometry (from the grc, γεωμετρία; ' "earth", ' "measurement") is, with , one of the oldest branches of . It is concerned with properties of space that are related with distance, shape, size, and relative position of figures. A mat ...

geometry
: the circle, square and triangle become the spatial elements in abstract art; they are, like color, fundamental systems underlying visible reality.


Russian avant-garde

Many of the abstract artists in Russia became Constructivists believing that art was no longer something remote, but life itself. The artist must become a technician, learning to use the tools and materials of modern production. ''Art into life!'' was
Vladimir Tatlin Image:Татлин.jpg, 200px, Vladimir Tatlin as sea-man, 1914-15 Vladimir Tatlin ( – 31 May 1953) was a Russia, Russian and USSR, Soviet painter, architect and stage-designer. Tatlin achieved fame as the architect who designed The Monument to ...
's slogan, and that of all the future Constructivists.
Varvara Stepanova 1920s. Rodchenko and Stepanova. Varvara Fyodorovna Stepanova (russian: Варва́ра Фёдоровна Степа́нова; – May 20, 1958) was a Russian artist. With her husband Alexander Rodchenko Aleksander Mikhailovich Rodchenko ( ...

Varvara Stepanova
and Alexandre Exter and others abandoned easel painting and diverted their energies to theatre design and graphic works. On the other side stood
Kazimir Malevich , birth_date = , birth_place = Kiev Governorate of Russian Empire , death_date = , death_place = Leningrad, Russian SFSR The Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic (Russian SFSR or RSFSR; rus, links=no, ...
, Anton Pevsner and Naum Gabo. They argued that art was essentially a spiritual activity; to create the individual's place in the world, not to organize life in a practical, materialistic sense. Many of those who were hostile to the materialist production idea of art left Russia. Anton Pevsner went to France, Gabo went first to Berlin, then to England and finally to America. Kandinsky studied in Moscow then left for the Bauhaus. By the mid-1920s the revolutionary period (1917 to 1921) when artists had been free to experiment was over; and by the 1930s only socialist realism was allowed.


The Bauhaus

The Bauhaus at Weimar, Germany was founded in 1919 by Walter Gropius. The philosophy underlying the teaching program was unity of all the visual and plastic arts from architecture and painting to weaving and stained glass. This philosophy had grown from the ideas of the Arts and Crafts movement in England and the Deutscher Werkbund. Among the teachers were Paul Klee,
Wassily Kandinsky Wassily Wassilyevich Kandinsky (; rus, Василий Васильевич Кандинский, Vasiliy Vasilyevich Kandinskiy, vɐˈsʲilʲɪj vɐˈsʲilʲjɪvʲɪtɕ kɐnʲˈdʲinskʲɪj;  – 13 December 1944) was a Russian painter a ...
, Johannes Itten, Josef Albers, Anni Albers, and László Moholy-Nagy. In 1925 the school was moved to Dessau and, as the Nazi party gained control in 1932, The Bauhaus was closed. In 1937 an exhibition of degenerate art, 'Entartete Kunst' contained all types of avant-garde art disapproved of by the Nazi party. Then the exodus began: not just from the Bauhaus but from Europe in general; to Paris, London and America. Paul Klee went to Switzerland but many of the artists at the Bauhaus went to America.


Abstraction in Paris and London

During the 1930s Paris became the host to artists from Russia, Germany, the Netherlands and other European countries affected by the rise of totalitarianism. Sophie Tauber and Jean Arp collaborated on paintings and sculpture using organic/geometric forms. The Polish Katarzyna Kobro applied mathematically based ideas to sculpture. The many types of abstraction now in close proximity led to attempts by artists to analyse the various conceptual and aesthetic groupings. An exhibition by forty-six members of the Cercle et Carré group organized by Joaquín Torres-García assisted by Michel Seuphor contained work by the Neo-Plasticists as well as abstractionists as varied as Kandinsky, Anton Pevsner and
Kurt Schwitters Kurt Hermann Eduard Karl Julius Schwitters (20 June 1887 – 8 January 1948) was a German artist who was born in Hanover Hanover (; german: Hannover ; nds, Hannober) is the capital and largest city of the German States of Germany, state of Lo ...
. Criticized by Theo van Doesburg to be too indefinite a collection he published the journal ''Art Concret'' setting out a manifesto defining an abstract art in which the line, color and surface only, are the concrete reality. Abstraction-Création founded in 1931 as a more open group, provided a point of reference for abstract artists, as the political situation worsened in 1935, and artists again regrouped, many in London. The first exhibition of British abstract art was held in England in 1935. The following year the more international ''Abstract and Concrete'' exhibition was organized by Nicolete Gray including work by
Piet Mondrian Pieter Cornelis Mondriaan (), after 1906 Piet Mondrian (, also , ; 7 March 1872 – 1 February 1944), was a Dutch painter and art theoretician who is regarded as one of the great artists of the 20th century. He is known for being one of the pion ...
, Joan Miró, Barbara Hepworth and Ben Nicholson. Hepworth, Nicholson and Gabo moved to the St. Ives group in Cornwall to continue their 'constructivist' work.


America: mid-century

During the Nazi rise to power in the 1930s many artists fled Europe to the United States. By the early 1940s the main movements in modern art, expressionism, cubism, abstraction, surrealism, and dada were represented in New York:
Marcel Duchamp Henri-Robert-Marcel Duchamp (; ; 28 July 1887 – 2 October 1968) was a French Americans, French-American painter, sculptor, chess player, and writer whose work is associated with Cubism, Dada, and conceptual art. Duchamp is commonly regarded, a ...

Marcel Duchamp
,
Fernand Léger Joseph Fernand Henri Léger (; February 4, 1881 – August 17, 1955) was a French painter Painting is the practice of applying paint Paint is any pigmented liquid, liquefiable, or solid mastic composition that, after application to a ...

Fernand Léger
,
Piet Mondrian Pieter Cornelis Mondriaan (), after 1906 Piet Mondrian (, also , ; 7 March 1872 – 1 February 1944), was a Dutch painter and art theoretician who is regarded as one of the great artists of the 20th century. He is known for being one of the pion ...
, Jacques Lipchitz, André Masson, Max Ernst, André Breton, were just a few of the exiled Europeans who arrived in New York. The rich cultural influences brought by the European artists were distilled and built upon by local New York painters. The climate of freedom in New York allowed all of these influences to flourish. The art galleries that primarily had focused on European art began to notice the local art community and the work of younger American artists who had begun to mature. Certain artists at this time became distinctly abstract in their mature work. During this period Piet Mondrian's painting ''Composition No. 10'', 1939–1942, characterized by primary colors, white ground and black grid lines clearly defined his radical but classical approach to the rectangle and abstract art in general. Some artists of the period defied categorization, such as Georgia O'Keeffe who, while a modernist abstractionist, was a pure maverick in that she painted highly abstract forms while not joining any specific group of the period. Eventually American artists who were working in a great diversity of styles began to coalesce into cohesive stylistic groups. The best known group of American artists became known as the Abstract expressionists and the New York School (art), New York School. In New York City there was an atmosphere which encouraged discussion and there was new opportunity for learning and growing. Artists and teachers John D. Graham and Hans Hofmann became important bridge figures between the newly arrived European Modernists and the younger American artists coming of age. Mark Rothko, born in Russia, began with strongly surrealist imagery which later dissolved into his powerful color compositions of the early 1950s. The action painting, expressionistic gesture and the act of painting itself, became of primary importance to Jackson Pollock, Robert Motherwell, and Franz Kline. While during the 1940s Arshile Gorky's and Willem de Kooning's figurative work evolved into abstraction by the end of the decade. New York City became the center, and artists worldwide gravitated towards it; from other places in America as well.


Later developments

Digital art, hard-edge painting,
geometric abstraction Black Square'', 1915, oil on linen, 79.5 x 79.5 cm, Tretyakov Gallery">Black_Square_(painting).html" ;"title="Kazimir Malevich, ''Black Square (painting)">Black Square'', 1915, oil on linen, 79.5 x 79.5 cm, Tretyakov Gallery, Moscow Geometric ab ...
, minimalism, lyrical abstraction, op art, abstract expressionism, color field painting, monochrome painting, assemblage (art), assemblage, neo-Dada, shaped canvas painting, are a few directions relating to abstraction in the second half of the 20th century. In the United States, ''Art as Object'' as seen in the Minimalist sculpture of Donald Judd and the paintings of Frank Stella are seen today as newer permutations. Other examples include Lyrical Abstraction and the sensuous use of color seen in the work of painters as diverse as Robert Motherwell, Patrick Heron, Kenneth Noland, Sam Francis, Cy Twombly, Richard Diebenkorn, Helen Frankenthaler, Joan Mitchell.


Causation

One socio-historical explanation that has been offered for the growing prevalence of the abstract in modern art – an explanation linked to the name of Theodor W. Adorno – is that such abstraction is a response to, and a reflection of, the growing abstraction of social relations in industrial society. Frederic Jameson similarly sees modernist abstraction as a function of the abstract power of money, equating all things equally as exchange-values. The social ''content'' of abstract art is then precisely the abstract nature of social existence – legal formalities, bureaucratic impersonalization, information/power – in the world of late modernity. Analytical psychology#Post-Jungian approaches, Post-Jungians by contrast would see the quantum theories with their disintegration of conventional ideas of form and matter as underlying the divorce of the concrete and the abstract in modern art.Aniela Jaffé, in C. G. Jung ed., ''Man and his Symbols'' (1978) pp. 288–89, 303


Gallery

File:Albert Gleizes, 1910-12, Les Arbres, oil on canvas, 41 x 27 cm. Reproduced in Du "Cubisme", 1912.jpg,
Albert Gleizes Albert Gleizes (; 8 December 1881 – 23 June 1953) was a major 20th-century French artist, theoretician, philosopher, a self-proclaimed founder of and an influence on the . Albert Gleizes and wrote the first major treatise on Cubism, ', 1912. ...
, 1910–12, ''Les Arbres (The Trees)'', oil on canvas, 41 × 27 cm. Reproduced in ''Du "Cubisme"'', 1912 File:Arthur Dove, 1911-12, Based on Leaf Forms and Spaces, pastel on unidentified support. Now lost.jpg, Arthur Dove, 1911–12, ''Based on Leaf Forms and Spaces'', pastel on unidentified support. Now lost File:Francis Picabia, 1912, Tarentelle, oil on canvas, 73.6 x 92.1 cm, Museum of Modern Art, New York.jpg,
Francis Picabia Francis Picabia (: born Francis-Marie Martinez de Picabia; 22January 1879 – 30November 1953) was a French avant-garde painter, poet and typographist. After experimenting with Impressionism and Pointillism, Picabia became associated with Cubism. ...

Francis Picabia
, 1912, ''Tarentelle'', oil on canvas, 73.6 × 92.1 cm, Museum of Modern Art, New York. Reproduced in ''Du "Cubisme"'' File:Vassily Kandinsky, 1912 - Improvisation 27, Garden of Love II.jpg,
Wassily Kandinsky Wassily Wassilyevich Kandinsky (; rus, Василий Васильевич Кандинский, Vasiliy Vasilyevich Kandinskiy, vɐˈsʲilʲɪj vɐˈsʲilʲjɪvʲɪtɕ kɐnʲˈdʲinskʲɪj;  – 13 December 1944) was a Russian painter a ...
, 1912, ''Improvisation 27'' (''Garden of Love'' II), oil on canvas, 120.3 × 140.3 cm, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. Exhibited at the 1913 Armory Show File:Pablo Picasso, 1913-14, Head (Tête), cut and pasted colored paper, gouache and charcoal on paperboard, 43.5 x 33 cm, Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art, Edinburgh.jpg,
Pablo Picasso Pablo Ruiz Picasso (25 October 1881 – 8 April 1973) was a Spanish painter, sculptor, printmaker 300px, Rembrandt, ''Self-portrait'', etching">Self-portrait.html" ;"title="Rembrandt, ''Self-portrait">Rembrandt, ''Self-portrait'', et ...

Pablo Picasso
, 1913–14, ''Head'' (''Tête''), cut and pasted colored paper, gouache and charcoal on paperboard, 43.5 × 33 cm, Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art, Edinburgh File:Porte-Fenetre a Collioure 1914.jpg,
Henri Matisse Henri Émile Benoît Matisse (; 31 December 1869 – 3 November 1954) was a French artist, known for both his use of colour and his fluid and original draughtsmanship. He was a drawing, draughtsman, printmaking, printmaker, and sculpture, scul ...

Henri Matisse
, 1914, ''French Window at Collioure'', Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris File:Hilma af Klint Svanen.jpg,
Hilma af Klint Hilma af Klint (; October 26, 1862 – October 21, 1944) was a Sweden, Swedish artist and mysticism, mystic whose paintings were the first Western abstract art known to the current art community. A considerable body of her abstract work predates t ...

Hilma af Klint
, ''Svanen'' (''The Swan''), No. 17, Group IX, Series SUW, October 1914–March 1915. This abstract work was never exhibited during af Klint's lifetime. File:Theo van Doesburg Composition VII (the three graces).jpg, Theo van Doesburg,
Neo-Plasticism ''De Stijl'' (; ), Dutch language, Dutch for "The Style", also known as Neoplasticism, was a Dutch art movement founded in 1917 in Leiden. De Stijl consisted of artists and architects. In a narrower sense, the term ''De Stijl'' is used to ref ...
: 1917, ''Composition VII'' (''The Three Graces'') File:Leger railway crossing.jpg,
Fernand Léger Joseph Fernand Henri Léger (; February 4, 1881 – August 17, 1955) was a French painter Painting is the practice of applying paint Paint is any pigmented liquid, liquefiable, or solid mastic composition that, after application to a ...

Fernand Léger
1919, ''The Railway Crossing'', oil on canvas, 53.8 × 64.8 cm, The Art Institute of Chicago File:Joseph Csaky, Deux figures, 1920, relief, limestone, polychrome, 80 cm, Kröller-Müller Museum, Otterlo, Holland.jpg, Joseph Csaky, ''Deux figures'', 1920, relief, limestone, polychrome, 80 cm, Kröller-Müller Museum, Otterlo File:Albert Gleizes, 1921, Composition bleu et jaune (Composition jaune), oil on canvas, 200.5 x 110 cm DSC00547.jpg,
Albert Gleizes Albert Gleizes (; 8 December 1881 – 23 June 1953) was a major 20th-century French artist, theoretician, philosopher, a self-proclaimed founder of and an influence on the . Albert Gleizes and wrote the first major treatise on Cubism, ', 1912. ...
, 1921, ''Composition bleu et jaune'' (''Composition jaune''), oil on canvas, 200.5 × 110 cm File:Piet Mondrian - Lozenge Composition with Yellow, Black, Blue, Red, and Gray - 1921 - The Art Institute of Chicago.jpg,
Piet Mondrian Pieter Cornelis Mondriaan (), after 1906 Piet Mondrian (, also , ; 7 March 1872 – 1 February 1944), was a Dutch painter and art theoretician who is regarded as one of the great artists of the 20th century. He is known for being one of the pion ...
, ''Composition with Yellow, Black, Blue, Red, and Gray'', 1921, Art Institute of Chicago File:Fire in the Evening.JPG, Paul Klee, ''Fire in the Evening'', 1929 File:Carlsund Rapid (1930).jpg, Otto Gustaf Carlsund, ''Rapid'' (1930), a Concrete Art restaurant mural, Stockholm File:Newman-Onement 1.jpg, Barnett Newman, ''Onement 1'', 1948, Museum of Modern Art, New York


See also

; In other media * Abstract animation * Abstract comics * Abstract photography * Experimental film * Musique concréte * Noise music


References


Sources

* * * *


External links


The term "Abstraction" spoken about at Museum of Modern Art by Nelson Goodman of Grove Art Online

Non Figurative Art explained

Tate UK "Abstract art is..."
{{DEFAULTSORT:Abstract Art Abstract art, Art movements Modern art Painting