Hannelore Fobo, based upon the findings of Evgenij Kozlov (2009)



Introduction - page 1

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Century XX Century XX >>

During the 20th century, three main trends emerged and have grown to dominate the artistic landscape.

The first trend is an intellectual one in which the work of art is seen as a material stand-in for its meaning. It appears as a code for a particular attitude of its creator, analysing society or human psychology with a “critical approach.” Therefore, the cipher key is required in order to “decode” the work. This trend, which includes deconstructivism, as well as pop-art, is focused upon the work’s message expressed in concepts and notions and, in the widest sense, can be defined as conceptual art.

In conceptual art the object of appreciation is the wit (at times gross and even crude), the esprit of the author, rather than his product. Most particularly, the product itself often consists in selecting, replicating and labeling an existing object. Thus, the work of art turns into a witticism, and its lifetime is accordingly short. It is no wonder that conceptual art offers a great opportunity for contextual analysis, as a witticism becomes clear only within a particular context. The success of conceptual art is based upon a delusion suggesting that to understand the artist’s intention is to recognise the value of the work of art.

The opposite trend, abstractionism, is an attempt to evoke feelings formed directly by the senses. Abstract art is the psychology of colour, form and line. It has a meditative character about it that seeks to exclude the speaking mind and give the observer an experience of pure perception. Whereas the first works of abstract art possess the power of innovation, of originality, the later works simply try to partake of this power.

While conceptual art tends towards frivolity, abstract art tends towards contemplation. The frivolous work of art appeals to the person who is on the crest of time and enjoys fashionable discourse: conceptual art becomes parlour art supplying topics for highbrow small talk. The contemplative work of art appeals to the person who is in search of the inner self and is easily carried away by certain fancies. Captivating the mind with vague emotions, abstractionism becomes an attribute of the comfortable bourgeois lifestyle.

There are, however, works of art that challenge both the mind and the intuition by producing complex harmonies which include the unordered, the uncoded  without arranging it, but rather establishing relations within it. There are works of art that accept chaos as it is and, at the same time, turn it into a higher order – they are CHAOSE ART.

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