Art History - Essay Example

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According to Duchamp art was not only for demonstration of the past but was also meant to symbolize the need to change and characterize the modern…
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Art History
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Duchamp and Dadaism Duchamp is considered one of the best influences of the 20th century art mostly because of his modernity related to western art. According to Duchamp art was not only for demonstration of the past but was also meant to symbolize the need to change and characterize the modern world (Glaves-Smith 205). This is mostly seen with his works on the urinal which was a readymade product which he named the fountain. The aim was to break the traditional reasoning and put into logic that art is modest and smart and can influence the shape of the world. Similar views can be expressed by the dada movement (Tom Sandqvist). According to this movement, reason and logic led people into war and therefore they were against capitalism. Fountain is one the greatest Duchamp’s works and this piece of art is dated 1917. This piece of art is well known for the production of readymade or found objects of visual art. It is also important to understand that this piece of art has a close relationship with the dada movement. As already mentioned above, Dadaism was against the strict logic and reasoning and productions like the fountain was meant to change the focus of art from the traditional visual to mental.
Theo van Doesburg is also one of the Dadaist artists who had similar opinions of changing the focus of the traditional art to modernism. According to this artist, art was not meant to just please the eyes but also to appease the mind. His works closely resembles Duchamp’s work of cubism. The two artists based their works on change of ideologies as they argued that lack of change in ideology is what resulted into the First World War. Their main aim of art was to show retaliation against capitalism in most countries across Europe and America. Theo van Doesburg made large drawings, writings and other studies regarding large glasses. This artist desired the accommodation of modernity with his style commonly used in modern industrial products. This is also similar to Duchamp especially his work on the fountain. The urinal is commonly used in the toilets. It is also important to understand that the formation of glasses and tiles as pieces of art is majorly influenced with these two artists. Besides this Doesburg was also much concerned about alphabetical designs something that is argued to be an influence from his witty chess game (Baljeu). He is reported to be a lover of chess and this influenced most of his art work. A good example is the formation of the vertical word of zig-zag in 1931.
The artists aimed at stripping words their meaning and give them new meaning through the power of expression. This is also similar to the works of cubism which is also expressed by Duchamp. These two artists aimed at evoking new reality instead of using description. Duchamp’s work on cubism was a great influence in formation of tiles which are used for decorations in modern houses (Henry M). The use of different lines in different colors is also embraced. These two artists are from the dada movement and they aimed changing the traditional art from the eyes to the mind.
Works Cited
Baljeu, Joost. Theo van Doesburg. New York: Studio Vista, 1974.
Glaves-Smith, Ian Chilvers & John. A Dictionary of Modern and Contemporary Art. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2005.
Henry M, Sayre. A World of Art 7th Edition. New York: Prentice Hall, 2012.
Tom Sandqvist. DADA EAST: The Romanians of Cabaret Voltaire. London: London MIT Press, 2006. Read More
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