Modernism - an Introduction to the Semester (5/9)
Formalism - Modernist Aesthetics
Artistic Modernism is more recent than philosophical Modernity.
It began during the middle or the end of the 19th century, or during the 1880s -- depending on the discourse. Robert Atkins (Art Speak: A Guide to Modern Ideas, Movements, and Buzzwords, 1848-1944 (New York: Abbeville Press, 1993) dates Modernism "roughly from the 1860s through the 1970s" (p. 139).
The slogan of the era, "art for the sake of art" was voiced by artists who defined themselves as "avant-garde."
- Modernism emerged from the social and political revolution sweeping Europe.
- Culture was becoming:
- more urban and less rural
- industrial rather than agrarian
- secularism was growing while organized religion in daily life was diminishing
- the old system of artistic patronage had ended
Make It New (Ezra Pound)
- These artists were
- rebellious of restrictions
- critical of the status quo
- destained middle-class values