Appropriation as a critical practice in postmodernist art - Essay Example

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Appropriation as a critical practice in postmodernist art Introduction Appropriation is a significant part of postmodernism that has always played an important role in the history of the arts (visual, musical, and literary), which in practice is "the use of borrowed elements in the creation of a new work" (TATE, Appropriation)…
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Download file to see previous pages In the context of visual arts, art appropriation is associated with concepts of borrowing, adoption, recycling, or sampling certain aspects or even the entire form of any visual arts creation. The strategies used include recombinant, variation, interpretation, re-vision, imitation, supplement, re-evaluation, version, improvisation, increment, homage, paraphrase, forgery, mimicry, allusion, and karaoke.  Thus, in this form of art the artist while creating a new object uses certain elements borrowed from another artist’s works. This borrowing, referred to in the context of describing the new work, will term it as 'the artist uses appropriation;' or it may also directly refer to the new work and state, 'this is a piece of appropriation art'. Within ‘Arts’ the practice of appropriation involves the use of other artists’ symbol, ideas, artefacts, objects, photographs, sound, forms or styles from the various cultures, popular culture, art history, or any man created visual or non visual art form (Schneider, 2003). An elementary feature of appropriation art is that the artist in his new work simply reframes the original idea and presents it as a new one. Thus, in a majority of the cases, the original work still remains visible or accessible without change within the framework of the new creation. Anthropologists in their various research papers have claimed that this process of appropriation, is another form of cultural borrowing and includes concepts of both art and urbanism, and represents a path of the cultural modifications taking place while also distinguishing the relationship between the different cultures worldwide (Schneider, 2007). The words variation and  appropriation in art often viewed as synonyms and used interchangeably, to denote the same form of work (ibid). In this context, we will examine works of three famous artists Robert Rauschenberg, Andy Warhol, and Barbara Kruger as we explore the use of appropriation as a critical practice in postmodernist art.  Discussion A brief overview of the history of appropriation art: Various artists, scholars and critics, have studied and analysed the route of the ‘appropriative’ notions that have been present in the arts history for many centuries. The word ‘appropriation’ implies ownership rights, and associated questions on unethical practices. Appropriation has been long present within the history of arts, and a study of the ancient artworks will reveal that the classical Greek artworks existed primarily through the Roman art appropriations. These were presented in the form of reproductions, created specially, to preserve, to keep records, to document, or to elicit a culture they hoped to imitate in the future (Deloria, 1999), while during the Middle Ages, a perfectly reproduced artwork was generally granted the same honour as the original piece. As per the notions associated with appropriation art, one can also refer Leonardo da Vinci as an appropriation artist of the middle ages. Da Vinci used the ‘recombinant’ technique of appropriation, and accepted ideas from different sources and diverse subjects like art, mathematics, biology, and engineering and then combining them to create inventory artworks. In fact, modern historians contend that many of Da Vinci’s scientific models and designs were imitated and improvised versions of the works of another famous sculptor ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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