Abstract Art Prints
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Abstract Art Prints
What are the aesthetic components that make you respond to an abstract art print? Do you like art prints that show texture, depth, deep contrasting colour with lots of shapes that has an organised feel? Or do you prefer abstract art prints that are minimal, with a few broad brush lines on a white background, or perhaps a lot of messy line with a lot of colour?
Abstract art has been encapsulated with so many different styles. De Kooning, Kandinsky, Motherwell, Pollock, Picasso, Chagall, Matisse all worked within the bounds of abstraction where references to the reality varied with each artist.
Kandinsky, Motherwell and Pollock in their later work had very little reference to realism whereas Matisse, Picasso and Chagall had utilised their abstract work within a realistic framework. Objects and figures could often be seen without form.
Losing form in a painting as with Matisse’s work, reduces it to pattern and where figures are included; like Picasso and Chagall, a cartoon feel comes to mind.
So here are some aesthetic descriptions that have been mentioned thus far. Art prints or paintings, can be described as ‘flat’, without depth, without form. Art prints can be described as organised or unorganised and art prints can look more like cartoons than real figures.
The use of form in abstraction, brings it closer to reality, as nature is intrinsic to depth of field and made up of smaller components that all have form. Losing form, means you lose light and shade and losing this aesthetic means you are losing a big part of an art prints expressiveness, that being; mood or atmosphere.
Mark Rothko was the abstract extraordinaire, he invented a new way of seeing in abstraction call ‘Colorfield’ or minimal abstraction. Ironically, his colour was limited to bands of oranges, pinks, green, blue, red. He preferred to use dark colour, violet, plum, grey, black, and had no interest in colour and its relationship with form.
Rothko, also excluded line and most shape in his work. What he was left with was a routine – a routine in colour, size (large) and shape (rectangles) and as his work was so limited in design, that the upside was a huge quantity of art work produced by his technicians.
This type of abstraction, because it has no reference to our world of life, is often termed as non-objective art. This is not to be confused with ‘subjective art’.
To create a moody atmosphere with his work, exhibitions would be curated utilising the dimmer switch. Instead of stark white gallery walls, you would have a space with low light that made you feel there was an oncoming eclipse of the sun – a little bit eerie. Visiting Rothko’s later work just before he committed suicided on barbiturates and self harm to his wrist, was indeed all about mood.
The knowledge of the artist where they have come from, their personal stories can affect our feelings when we look at their work. If you were to be told that the person who painted the rectangle plum squares was the local tradesperson, none of us would give it much thought. But if you were told the same image sold for 17 million dollars, and it was from someone who lost his entire family in the holocaust and the artist committed suicide, you would stop and look.
The idea that his work is non-objective in some ways can be and other ways can’t be. The person who knows nothing about the artist could be seen as a purist. They are looking at the artwork on its own merit without influence. Whereas the person who knows Rothko, knows the value of his work, knows the Museum of Modern Art in the US has a dedicated wing for his work, that person will see the work in the context of importance and may well be influenced. Then there is the third person who is educated in modern art and can still say, ‘it does nothing for me’.