The influence of other cultures on art
Elizabeth Barton, a well-known quilt artist has a number of very interesting and productive online workshops. There is always a multitude of stunning quilts made from her students - and here is just one made by Geraldine in her workshop More Abstract Art For Quiltmakers..... what amazes me is watching the students, from their first design to their last - the results are amazing!
...But let's see what gets her students motivated by taking a look at what's inside this workshop with a short excerpt pulled directly from the first lesson.
Excerpt from More Abstract Art For Quiltmakers
As well as scientific discoveries, there were also cultural ones around 1900. While up until then European art had been largely representational, towards the end of the 19th century, art from other parts of the world began to be known – art which did not depend quite so strongly upon the depiction of reality.
As a result of their greater awareness of different cultures, and of all the scientific discoveries and philosophical theorizing, artists became much more diverse in their artistic process. The artists wanted to discover new ways of making art. They hoped to reveal the absolute and universal truth, a new spirituality.
There had also been key painters in the 19th century who painted in a new semi-abstract manner e.g. Whistler (1834-1903) in his painting Nocturne in Black and Gold emphasized the visual sensation of the scene rather than trying to paint it accurately. Turner (1175-1851) had done the same thing with his great paintings of water and sky.
The Impressionists wanted to paint outside so they could capture the light on what they saw, the visual impression of what they saw rather than a concrete depicture of the object.
Cezanne (1839-1906) investigated how we perceive color and the effects of colors upon each other by varying the placement of patches of different hues and temperatures of color. There was a great deal of experimentation and discovery.
Inspired by Cezanne, Braque (1882-1963) and Picasso(1881-1973) began to look at how we perceive shapes and forms and Cubism was developed. Many artists gathered in Paris and began to make more and more different kinds of abstract art.
Some key figures from that time are the Delaunays (Sonia (1885-1979) and Robert(1885-1941)), Henri Matisse (1869-1954), Lyonel Feininger (1871-1956), Mondrian (1872-1944), Paul Klee (1879-1940), Juan Gris (1887-1927), Jean Arp (1887-1966), Itten (1888-1967) and Albers (1888-1976).
But the advent of WWII pretty much put an end to the development of abstract art in Europe – and to their idealism. And more about what happened in abstract art at that point…. next week!
Now you know a little about the start of abstract painting, let’s begin to sketch out some possible quilt designs that are based on some of the great abstract paintings of our time. In several of the lessons in this course, I will give you two or three sets of instructions that you can follow to develop your own abstract ideas. While you are following these instructions, it is very likely that you will think “oh, what if I changed that instruction and did it a different way”, or “I have another idea!”. Be sure to write these ideas of yours down! And as soon as you have completed my suggestions…. then try out your own.
When you upload the sketches for us to see, and (if you wish) for me to evaluate, please include the ones you thought up yourself and tell us all about how you did it. That way we will all learn, and our ideas and creativity will multiply! Use very dark ink for your sketches– a bold felt tip or marker pen is good - so that the sketch will scan in clearly.
About More Abstract Art for Quiltmakers:
Intrigued by abstract art? But don’t know where to begin even thinking about it? How and why abstract art, in all its varieties, was developed is fascinating. And there are so many wonderful quilt designs ideas within the abstract art field! Let’s dig in and see what we can glean. This class is parallel to my Abstract Art for Quiltmakers class. They deal with the subject in different ways. More Abstract Art looks at the history and the popular abstract painters we know. Abstract Art for Quiltmakers focuses particularly on the contributions made by female abstract artists. Find out more...
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