The Concept of Minimalist Art

The earlier artists that were regarded as minimalist stood against anyone who tried to brand them as self-expressionists. Indeed, minimalistic art had much contrast to Expressionism. The art revolved around mostly simple geometric figures – uniform and symmetric, often cubic, stripped from their complex surroundings and thrown onto the canvas, using unmixed paint right from the tube.

Minimalism – The Masters of Less

Black Square
One of the earliest art that came to be defined as ‘minimal’ came from Kazimir Malevich, known as the Black Square. The painting describes just that – a black square on a white canvas. Originally derived as a concept in Russian Suprematism, the oil on canvas, as described by Kazimir, depicts the purity of an emotion. The black square represents the feeling, while the white background is the void that lies beyond this feeling, waiting for the feeling to end, to take hold of you once it does.

The Movement
In the words of one of the greatest in the Minimalist Movement, Frank Stella’s, “What you see is what you see” quote can be considered as the way to look at minimalist artworks. Of course, what you deduce from what you see is the result of opinions. His work, “The Marriage of Reason and Squalor, II”(1959) hinted at his commercial influence. Ad Reinhardt explains the Minimalism as, “The more stuff in it, the busier the work of art, the worse it is. More is less. Less is more. The eye is a menace to clear sight. The laying bare of oneself is obscene. Art begins with the getting rid of nature”. David Burliuk, a Russian Avant-Garde artist, wrote: ‘Minimalism derives its name from the minimum of operating means. Minimalist painting is purely realistic – the subject being the painting itself.’

A View of the Minimalist Movement, 1960

Origins
The real Minimalist Art Movement can be believed to have originated around the late 60’s in New York City. This can also be considered around the same time as the beginning of Literary Minimalism. The art depicted an extreme form of simplicity, often coming with a bare-all-without-baring-much attitude, giving minimalist artworks the hard-edge look that defines them. The main characteristics of minimalist art are what separate them from expressionist art – no form of cultural gestures, no representation of any strong public opinion, and absolutely no point of self-explanation of the artist through the painting or the sculpture.

The Names
Through time, the art came to be known as “ABC art”, “literalism” and “Reductive art”, with “Minimalistic” as the most prominent. The word was, however, rejected by most artists in the Movement. One of these was Donald Judd, the man famous for his ‘box art’ structures and installations. One of the people on the forefront of the Minimalist Movement of the 1960s, his work featured at “Primary Structures”, a historic group exhibit held at the Jewish Museum in New York, 1966. Alongside him were Carl Andre, Dan Flavin and Sol Lewitt, other important names of the Movement.

Other Art Forms
Although minimalism can be related to other art forms like Pop art or Land art (it may be debated on which is a derivative of which), minimalism holds its own style of headstrong artwork that is simple to see, yet provides a view into the human minds as heavy as (maybe even heavier than) the others. It still adheres to the concept of beauty being in the eyes of the beholder, but it does so in such a simple manner that we can discuss the effect of the work for hours.

The Passing of a Movement
It was at the end of the 1960s that the Minimalist Movement came to a slow and steady pace, if not been disbanded altogether. Artists moved on, critics fangs bared, attacked all minimalism, calling it frugal, confused and sometimes, ‘minimal’ in the derogatory sense. The most noteworthy critical remarks about the Minimalistic Movement can be found in an essay written by Michael Fried, “Art and Objecthood” (1967).

Towards the end of the 60’s, minimalist artists ended up redefining the concept of minimalism, using sculptures and Land art to almost eliminate the difference between object and the art of that object. This includes the “Light and Space” movement influenced by John McLaughlin. The works often included installations with materials like glass and resin. All works that pertained to the idea of minimalism, created after the Movement came to be known as “Post-Minimalism”.

To a minimalistic artist, less will always be more. They would refrain from an object having to share space, along with the viewers interest, with another object in the same canvas. They believe this to be a cause for unwanted confusion. It was, is, and hopefully will still continue to be, the belief that changed Modern Art.

How to Draw Graffiti Names on Paper

In the modern times, art of drawing graffiti took root and flourished in turbulent times throughout the history where people wanted to express themselves against the establishment. Revolutionaries across the world have greatly popularized this art form. However, graffiti drawing has a long history and it can be traced back to pre-historic times (as far as 30,000 BCE). The graffiti drawings of this period were in the form of cave paintings. The definition of graffiti is presented as scribbling or drawing on a flat surface. You can draw letters and different shapes in this form of art. Graffiti drawing is not bound by a set of rules or standard techniques. Therefore, you shouldn’t rely on a specific technique or school of drawing.

Drawing Graffiti on Paper

The following instructions should guide you through the process of drawing graffiti names on paper.
Start drawing graffiti by selecting a word, preferably your name.
Draw the letters with enough spacing between each of them. Maintaining proper spacing helps in their decoration.
Make use of capital letters for graffiti drawing. There are many different styles and fonts you can choose from for this activity.
Never try to copy the art work created by other artists; you can however, always use their style.
It is possible to develop your own style of graffiti. However, it is requires a lot of practice and experimentation.
Decide on the type of edges you are going to use in the graffiti. Bubble edges are commonly used. Use of sharp edges also gives the drawing a nice look.
It is recommended to draw lightly in the beginning. Erasing and changing the design becomes easier with this approach.
Don’t create an outline that is too big in size.
Start the activity of decorating and embellishing the graffiti after you have completed their basic outline.
Try to vary the thickness of letters to give them an artistic look. A 3D-effect can also be added to these letters by shading the outline in varying proportions.
There are many additional details you can make use of in graffiti drawing. Drawing bolts of lightning and blaze of fire around the words are some of the additional details. You can also create your own designs. One thing to be kept in mind here is that these embellishments should enhance the appearance of your drawing. Overdoing it would make the drawing appear tacky.
As far as possible, make use of crayons. Coloring with these oil-based colors is easier in comparison to that with water colors (at least for beginners). Color pencils and markers also are suited for graffiti drawing.
Tips for Drawing Graffiti

The ideas below should prove to be helpful for beginners.
An important point to keep in mind is that drawing graffiti is an art and not a science to make it appear procedural and heavy. Just let your hand loose for the strokes and lines to appear speedy and confident. Only then can you develop this art.
Always try to learn from works of senior artists. The detailing and variety of strokes used by them should be incorporated in your drawings. You can thereby enrich your style through continuous learning.
Start with simple designs and then after enough practice, try to elaborate on these designs.
Internet is a rich source of information where you can find lots of graffiti images on various websites. Learn from these images and as said earlier, don’t copy them.
There are many different exercises that senior artists recommend for improving the strokes. Some of these exercises are drawing waves, circles, slanting lines and other designs. In the beginning, you might find these exercises boring. Later on, however, you would learn to enjoy this process. After all, practice is the only way to become perfect.
There is great scope for experimentation in graffiti drawing. You can literally try out thousands of styles and techniques in this form of art. Once you become well versed with the basics of drawing graffiti names, try to incorporate pictures and different types of designs in the lettering. There are many different ways to enhance the appearance of your graffiti drawings. Hope you learned something on how to draw graffiti names on paper through this write-up.

Realism and Realistic Art

Artists have always drawn inspiration from Nature, human experiences, mysticism and a variety of other facets of life. As times change, art also evolves. Different styles and schools of art have emerged with the changing times. The development of Realism and Realistic art during the eighteenth century will always be looked upon as an important phase in the history of art. Realism in art is basically an art movement which is known for its departure from the traditional styles of Neoclassicism and Romanticism. Wondering what is Realistic art and how is it different from the other schools of art? Scroll down to find out more about this art movement along with the artists associated with it.

Realism in Art

Realism in the artistic world basically symbolizes the depiction of objects as they exist. This school of art emerged in response to Neoclassicism and Romanticism in art. Romanticism was an intellectual artistic movement that influenced many artists during the seventeenth and the eighteenth century. It placed a great deal of importance to emotions, creativity and the imagination of the artist. The art was much more than the reflection of the Nature. Those who followed Romantic art tradition, used their imagination freely in the works of art. Appreciation of Nature’s beauty and mysticism were increasingly used as themes. On the other hand, famous artists who painted as per the Neoclassical art are known to have used classical styles for expressing their ideas about bravery, sacrifice and the love of country.

Characteristics of Realistic Art

Realism in visual arts is basically about moving over the interpretation, personal bias, subjectivity or emotionalism and depicting the painting theme in an empirical sense. Realists rejected the characteristics of Romantic art as they believed in portraying objects with a sense of objective reality. Thus, the artists didn’t use techniques to change the appearance of the object. For instance, an artist who follows the Realistic art tradition would never attempt to conceal any flaws in the object or scene he/she is painting. The Realism art movement can also be associated with the age of positivism. Positivism is all about gaining knowledge using scientific methods of observation and objective evaluation. In art, this translates to depiction of objects as they are. One must not allow subjectivity and imagination to affect the depiction of the objects. Realism in art is all about rejecting idealization. Those who follow the realistic tradition in art believe in an accurate portrayal of ordinary people and events. The artist’s muse shouldn’t be someone who is larger-than-life or glorious always. This explains why artists who follow this tradition didn’t believe in painting the Gods, Goddesses or heroes. Their aim was to depict the daily life with as much accuracy as possible.

Realists basically draw inspiration from contemporary life. The subject matter of their paintings generally includes daily scenes and ordinary people.They depict contemporary life in a realistic and accurate manner. For instance, after industrial revolution, many of the famous paintings from Realistic school of art depicted workers performing their tasks in factories. They tried to depict the workers as they looked. However ugly or unaesthetic the surroundings looked, the painter painted them with honesty, just as they existed. No changes were made to make them look aesthetically pleasing. If you go through the famous painters list, you will come across names such as Gustave Courbet, Honore Daumier, Jean-Francois Millet, John Singer Sargent, James McNeil Whistler, Jan Van Eyck and Jean-Baptiste-Camille Corot. These were some of the famous painters who followed this art tradition. Movements such as the Ashcan School, the Contemporary Realist, and the American Scene Painters are also based on this art tradition. These painters believe in the painting what they see. The logic given by these artists is that the abstract objects, or the objects that are intangible or non-existent, don’t belong to the realm of painting.

The rejection of the Romantic art tradition is an important aspect of Realistic art. Painting ordinary people and daily scenes in a realistic manner is the objective of this form of art.