When you think of something modern, what’s the first thing you think of? I would say that “modern” is a celebration of novelty and innovation, and a break with the past and its certain characteristics. Whether it’s involved with the way of thinking, music, literature or what we’ll be engaged with throughout this article, art, more precisely, sculpture, and any kind of innovation after World War II can be considered as the blooming of modernism in almost every pore of one society. Many people don’t approve of modernism to be the significant and valuable art movement, but I believe it has a lot of breath-taking works of art and true creativity to offer. I was the one to connect the lack of innovation to modernism and to satisfy my previous opinion, I’ll say something I’ll keep on thinking: It’s not anything revolutionary, like other art movements were, but it’s surely revolutionary on the personal level. The lack of knowledge and information was what made me think that way and what probably makes others, too. Of course, there are some artists who exaggerate in making innovations, but lots of them do it just the way it should be done. So, if you want to change your mind or expand your views, continue on reading.
Auguste Rodin is considered to be the father of modern sculpture, although he stuck with traditional artistic conventions. Rodin remained self- thought, but he respected the academic tradition of art and tended to emphasize artistry. He had an exhibition that was of big importance to modern sculpture. It was a sort of beginning of the modernism in sculpturing, held in Paris in 1900.
In parallel with cubist painting in the early 20th century, the cubist sculpture was a style that also developed. Pablo Picasso and Georges Braque were the ones who made it come true. Cubist artists used collage, bent, assembled pieces of metal, clay and plaster molds to make sculptures. When it comes to applying the wallpaper, the more traditional artists were concerned with accurately rendering the natural world by creating an illusion, while Picasso, for example, represented the wallpaper by printing the wicker pattern which would represent itself only by actually representing something different from the natural world. When Picasso constructed a sculpture from disparate parts, instead of modeling clay or carving wood, it began the modern technique in sculpturing called assemblage or “construction.” During the ‘50s and ‘60s a wide range of artists started experimenting with various materials for making sculptures. Anthropomorphic abstraction, surrealist imagery, new materials and other various innovations became characteristics of newer modern sculptures.
By the ‘60s Minimalism, Geometric abstraction and Abstract expressionism predominated sculpture. Large scales work, welded steel works and environmental installation scale works were some of the works of that period. Monumentality of the theme, the purity of the line and motion were elements added by various artists of minimalism and post-minimalism in sculpture. In the ‘80s the figurative sculpture was being explored. An important medium in modern sculpture was practicing a ceramic sculpture like Picasso and many others did.
Contemporary movements include environmental art and site specific which is also abstract sculpture work. This land art refers to creating environmental sculptures on expansive sites. Imagery, abstraction, figuration through video art, light sculpture, installation art and environment were represented in the new way by the ‘70s. Conceptual art, on the other hand, is art in which the ideas and concepts include installations created by simply following instructions written: “In conceptual art the idea or concept is the most important aspect of the work. When an artist uses a conceptual form of art, it means that all of the planning and decisions are made beforehand and the execution is a perfunctory affair. The idea becomes a machine that makes the art.” said Sol LeWitt. Snow and ice sculptures are used decoratively in some cuisines. Sound and art toy sculptures also became popular since the late ‘90s.
This article was only an introduction to basic modern sculpture characteristics, forms and its farm out. You can see how and when it started developing and you can now have a clue why it looks like it looks like today. Now, it’s far beyond these works of art of modernism that started back in the 20th century. You can come across some amazing artistry, today’s totally evolved techniques and styles, and understand its roots and where it all emerged from. It’s such a shame not to be informed about this topic that refers to basic stuff about modern sculpture, when today many different variations, new and improved, pop right into your face wherever you go. So, I hope it was interesting and that this article clarified some things to you!