It is really hard to define contemporary art but for our general idea we can say, contemporary art is the art that is being occurred in this modern age, especially after the mid of the 20th century. Through their contemporary paintings, Artists are delivering what they are thinking of about this current, sundry, and rapidly evolving world by using modern-day materials and processes.
It is not necessary that audiences and critics have acquired the same idea that contemporary painting is carrying but they can assume their own meaning. Yes, this is the beauty of this modern age artform. Contemporary art is like the debate on cultural, national, and global complex issues with no easy answers at the end of this art process.
History of Contemporary Art
Without any doubt, the history of contemporary art starts with Roger E. Fry, a British painter, critic, and founder of Contemporary Art Society. He is known for public awareness of contemporary art by showcasing the work in museums. Many institutions were started working on contemporary art till the mid of 20th century.
As per critics, the definition of contemporary art is being evolved every moment. Today, we cannot include the work of the early 1900s in contemporary art. Naturally, contemporary art can be defined as the work of today’s living artists but in the broader picture, all the work that has been done after the 1970s can be included in it. Like its definition, the types of contemporary art are also advancing with the use of modern-day materials and today’s complex issues.
Contemporary Painting Artists
When it comes to listing contemporary artists, it is quite difficult to name all of the big artists. Some worth mentioning figures are;
- Günther Förg – A German Painter/Sculptor/Photographer
- Liu Wei – A Chinese Painter/Videographer/Sculptor
- Miquel Barcelo – A Spanish Sculptor/Painter
- Cecily Brown – A British Painter
- Takashi Murakami – A Japanese Painter/Filmmaker
Most famous painters like Pablo Picasso and Leonardo da Vinci cannot be added to this list as they don’t belong to the modern age as per today’s definition of contemporary art.
Famous Contemporary Painting
A lot of work has been done so far in the field of contemporary arts. But we are only including those paintings here which lie during the period of 1970s to till date or we can only include work of living legends here as per today’s definition of contemporary arts.
Free and Leisure-10
58 years old Chinese artist, Yue Minjun has created this masterpiece in 2003. Eight characters are being shown in this painting that is all look alike, laughing in a bathing suit under the blue sky. This painting came from a series of works and placed in Today Art Museum, Beijing.
Brilliant Information Overload Pop Head
A Canadian artist, and novelist, Douglas Coupland has created this brilliant artwork in 2010. 6 different colors are being dropped from the head of the sitter to the bottom edge of the painting that stashing the identity of the sitter.
Filipino painter, Elmer Borlongan has created this masterclass painting with fine use of pigments dispersed in oil. Son is hiding behind the tree and the father is standing near to him, whispering something in the ear of his son. This painting is displayed in CANVAS, Philippine.
- Supper in Dresden
- This 20th-century masterpiece of contemporary painting was created in 1983 by a German painter named Georg Baselitz. The wise use of pink, black, and blue colors by figuration has been shown in this painting with center dominating, where one of the four persons sitting on a long table has eyes and mouth wide open.
Most Expensive Contemporary Painting
As Contemporary art only considers the work of living artists, the most expensive contemporary painting in the world right now is “Portrait of an Artist” by David Hockney. That painting was sold out for 90.3 million dollars at Christie’s – a British auction company.
After this auction in 2018, David Hockney becomes the most expensive living artist in the world. This English painter is also known for his work as a stage designer, draftsman, and photographer. He is also an important contender of pop art.
Why Contemporary Paintings are so Expensive?
With the advancement in contemporary artwork, the world gets to know that the paintings are no longer a showcase of the artist’s skillset. Because portraying natural scenery and picturing someone has been faded away with the invention of the camera. In today’s world, making paintings has become more challenging and more conceptual. That’s why artists have found something else than painting landscapes.
Many of the contemporary paintings seem like anyone can do that but those paintings could be the culmination of life’s work of artists and these are the masterworks that can only be found in museums.
Other Types of Contemporary Art
Contemporary art is not all about the paintings, there are many other categories that combined to define the contemporary arts. The types of contemporary arts are also being added with the passage of time by the evolution of technology. Some of the most common types in the modern era of contemporary arts are as follows;
This contemporary art form is a three-dimensional visual art that is being made by carving or modeling the stone, plastic, ceramics, mud, and wood. In contemporary artform, there is no limitation to the process and material.
One most common and widely used contemporary artform is photography. This artform was originated with the invention of the camera and especially after the first production of permanent photoetching. Self-portraying is one famous technique that is being used by many well-known artists.
Another three-dimensional show in the field of contemporary arts is installation art which is mainly used for interior purposes. Exterior interventions can somehow be included in this artform too. This art form is site conscious that helps in building the perception of space.
This contemporary artform used two media, one is visual and the other is audio. This art form was included in the contemporary arts just a few decades ago. Short films, experimental videos, and documentaries are the most common forms of video arts.
There is a number of live performances that are included in the contemporary arts such as music concerts, stage plays, live painting, dancing, etc. one or a group of performers can present any of these kinds in front of an audience. Typically, rehearsals are important before presenting art.
Prize for Contemporary Artists
More than dozens of prizes are being awarded to contemporary artists worldwide. Many nations, non-profit organizations, and museums have declared these prizes for the appreciation of the artist. These prizes act as a thank you note for legends for their lifetime efforts in the field of contemporary arts and also encourage the emerging artists. Some of the big prizes are;
Hugo Boss Prize
This award has no restrictions on nationality and age. This yearly award was established by Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York City in 1996. A committee of critics and scholars shortlist six to seven artists for the nomination of this award and the winner got the opportunity to showcase his/her work in the Hugo Boss Gallery.
John Moores Painting Prize
The prize was named after an English businessman, John Moores, and the first competition was conducted in 1957. Submission for the nomination of this award is open to the public and it is awarded after every two years. exhibition of the winning work and shortlist pieces is then conducted at Walker Art Gallery.
Emerging Artist Award
This award is started by The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum and it is handed out yearly in the honor of Larry Aldrich. The winner gets the cash prize award with an opportunity to exhibits his/her work in the museum.
Contemporary Paintings for Sale
Contemporary paintings are true masterpieces that are rarely found anywhere except museums. There are many online platforms that are selling these paintings online. Our art gallery is known for paintings of modern ages and some of these masterpieces from the field of contemporary arts are also being sold here. So, if you are interested in buying contemporary paintings, click here to view these options.