Art Can Change the World May 30, 2019
Throughout history, art has influenced world cultures in profound ways, and has had a huge effect on society. For example, in recent history, artist have had a major impact on social issues, from the Berlin Wall to Tiananmen Square. Art really can change the world.
1. Leonardo Di Vinci, ‘The Mona Lisa’, 1503
There’s a reason why this painting is the most famous in the world. That’s because Di Vinci challenged how artists create portraiture, redefining how composition was used to depict reality.
2. Andy Warhol, ‘Campbell’s Soup Cans’, 1962
Andy Warhol led the ‘Pop Art’ movement of the early 60’s. In fact, he practically invented ‘Pop Art’ by introducing the idea that art can be about ordinary, mundane objects. And his focus on things like soup cans changed the world, making us question ‘what is art’. Since then, countless artists have explored, questioned, and mimicked his work, and have changed how we think about art and paintings.
3. Banksy, ‘Les Mis’ Refugee Crisis, 2016
Banksy’s art is meant to be a message. Due to the political messages in his art, he challenges us to question the world we live in. His intent was often to pressure governments to change their policies. Banksy’s art embellishes the environments where it is placed, and reflects a ‘power to the people’ message. To this day, his art continues to be a tourist draw.
4. Pablo Picasso, ‘Guernica’, 1937
The destructive horrors of war are shockingly evident in this historic painting. Picasso’s ‘Guernica’ reflects the utter outrage of the destruction and inhumanity of war. Perhaps Picasso’s most famous painting, it depicts the senseless massacre of innocent people during the Spanish Civil War.
5. Henri Matisse, ‘The Snail’, 1953
Due to illness in 1948, Matisse was prohibited from painting, and had to devise a new way to create his art. He turned to gouaches découpées – collages made from gauche colored cut-outs. Matisse found this new technique to be extremely liberating, and considered many of these works to be among his finest creations.
6. Van Gogh, ‘Starry Night’, 1889
Impressionism changed the way that artists ‘saw’ the world. For example, artists like Van Gogh began to suggest that emotions and feelings were more ‘real’ than an exact likeness. He didn’t simply draw what he could see, but used his imagination to embellish the image. His painting, Starry Night, has become one of the world’s iconic paintings.
7. Claude Monet, ‘Waterlilies’, 1906
Monet’s depictions of light and shading was extraordinary, because he captured movement, passing time, and nature in a novel way. His technique represented a new type of painting, and changed the art world significantly. His style was widely imitated, and opened the door to what was to become ‘Abstract’ art.
8. J.M.W Turner, ‘The Fighting ‘Téméraire’, 1838
Turner’s landscapes are world-renowned. He studied the atmospheric effect of weather on sea and sky, and refined techniques used to create the play of light on images.
9. Salvador Dali, ‘Persistence of Memory’, 1931
Dali’s surrealist paintings recreate a world of dreams, imagination, and confusion. His famous iconic melting clocks, with its distorted figures and bent branches, confound the viewer, presenting them to an illusionary, expanded reality.
Yes, art will change the way you see. Feel free to check out my gallery, to see what speaks to you.