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Origin and definition of abstract art

The origin of modern and contemporary abstract art: cubism, futurism, surrealism, constructivism, minimalism

Modern abstract art is an artistic movement that emerged in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, which was characterized by a total or partial abstraction of natural forms. This artistic movement marked a break with the artistic traditions that had dominated the previous centuries, and opened the way to a new form of artistic expression.

Modern abstract art is an umbrella term that encompasses many different art movements, including cubism, futurism, surrealism, constructivism and minimalism. However, what connects them all is their interest in abstraction and the free expression of form and color.

Modern abstract artists sought to break free from the constraints of realistic representation, seeking instead to represent the essence or emotion of an object or subject, rather than its literal representation. Colors, shapes and textures are used to create a free and personal visual expression, rather than conforming to a realistic representation.


One of the most influential modern abstract art movements is Cubism, which was founded by Pablo Picasso and Georges Braque in the early 20th century. Cubism sought to represent objects from different angles and break them down into simple geometric shapes, creating a complex and dynamic view of reality.


Futurism, which emerged in Italy in the 1910s, was a future-oriented art movement that sought to represent speed, movement and technology. Futurist artists used geometric shapes, vibrant colors and dynamic compositions to create a sense of movement and energy.


Surrealism, which emerged in France in the 1920s, was an art movement focused on the expression of the unconscious and imagination. Surrealist artists used abstract forms to represent dreamlike images, dreams and fantasies.


Constructivism, which emerged in Russia in the 1920s, was an art movement focused on construction and functionality. Constructivist artists used geometric shapes and modern materials to create artworks that were useful and practical.


Minimalism, which emerged in the United States in the 1960s, was an art movement focused on reduction and simplicity. Minimalist artists used simple geometric shapes and industrial materials to create artworks that were sleek and minimalist.

Modern art influence

Modern abstract art has had a huge influence on contemporary art, and continues to inspire many artists today. Modern abstract artworks are often characterized by great freedom of expression, composition and color. Modern abstract artists often explored new techniques, such as using canvas as a working surface, painting with acrylics, using non-traditional materials such as wire and concrete, and combining different materials in a single work.

Modern abstract art was also influenced by the scientific and technological developments of the time, such as the theory of relativity and the discovery of atomic structure. These discoveries inspired modern abstract artists to explore new ways of representing reality.

Although modern abstract art has often been criticized for its lack of realism and pretentious nature, it has also been praised for its freedom of expression and exploration of new artistic territories. Modern abstract artists paved the way for a new form of creativity that has inspired generations of artists around the world.

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