illustration design and art abstrack

illustration design and art abstrack
illustration design and art abstrack

 illustration design and art abstrack

How to Understand Abstract Painting: The Study of Art Outside the World

Abstract painting is one type of art that is difficult to understand. Sometimes the variety of abstract images contained in it seems absurd. Scribbles are scattered everywhere and do not resemble any image. There is no definite figure, landscape or even form in it. So what's so beautiful about abstract work? Why is this type of art able to come out and develop? Some of his works are even priced at fantastic prices.

Understanding Abstract Painting

To understand the steps of understanding abstract painting we must first understand what abstract is. What definitions and definitions come from is abstract. Because being able to be one of the reasons why we do not understand it is because we do not really understand what is meant by abstract works. Or we don't understand the background of why this type of abstract painting came out and evolved.

What is Abstract

The meaning of abstract according to the Oxford dictionary is "Existing in thought or as an idea but not having a physical or concrete existence". There is as inspiration or inspiration but has no physical or concrete existence. Such abstract thesis which is a basic inspiration comes from the total concrete form of research that is in each chapter.

Abstract meaning in fine art includes taking over similar references to that definition. That is to describe various forms that do not exist physically / concretely in the world through the inspiration of elements of fine art, namely: lines, shapes, colors, etc.

Abstract art uses the visual language of shapes, colors and lines to create compositions of works that do not take over visual references that exist in nature/world (Arnheim, 1969). Abstract painting is a painting that presents an image that does not exist in the world.

Abstract paintings cannot draw human portrait subjects, landscapes, animals or other references found in the natural world. That's why abstract paintings look just like random scribbles that come from on canvas.

The Emergence of Abstract Art

At the end of the 19th century many artists felt they had to create a new type of art that suited the various changes that took place in those days. The fundamental changes taking place in technology, science, and philosophy add a new need for artists to keep going with the times. The changes that led to the artists drawing on their diverse theoretical arguments, a social and intellectual reflection on Western culture at the time (Gooding, 2000).

Cameras are one of the most changing technologies in this new world. With the establishment of camera technology, the artists feel left one of the benefits of painting as a medium of documentation. So that a variety of new movements of art outside realism continue to emerge, including abstract paintings. Abstract art is one of the answers derived from the various arguments drawn by western artists of the time.

Although the movement of abstract painting art dates back to the late 19th century, abstract drawings have been found dating back to ancient times. Western culture is not the first to create abstract works. Almost all cultures originally had abstract art forms. Such as african tribal motifs, Indonesian batik fabrics, geometric designs on calligraphy and Islamic architecture.

Abstraction Level

Sometimes abstract paintings including so-called simplification come from something real and concrete. A reliable photographer is able to make real object changes abstract. So including with artists, sometimes artists use concrete and real subjects to be abstract works. Like Indonesian artist from Bandung Ay Tjoe Christine who was inspired from the wings of insects in working on his abstract work.

Small Flies plus Other Wings by Ai Tjoe Christine

In fact, all inspiration is an abstract subject if it is not concrete to something. The depiction of abstract inspiration is the problem. Whether the next depiction craves to show what the next inspiration is or whether it is shown and communicated as clearly as possible to the public.

Take a look at the illustration of the degree of validity below:

The level of Abstraction is seen to understand through the illustration above. If very understanding sometimes precisely the delivery of abstract inspiration can look very radical. While if it is very abstract, it is difficult to understand the inspiration that craves to be put forward.

Visual communication design or applied art can be more inclined to take over the middle level

Learn The Background of Artists in Painting Abstract Works

Knowing the background of the artist in working on his work will give a new look at the work that we appreciate. Some artists will wear black to show the trauma of horror after the war. Other artists instead yearn to celebrate the achievements of human beings who have come to terms with war by wearing bright colors.

For example, like Jackson Pollock who painted his work by spilling his paint expressively on canvas. He chose to use a broken stick or brush as his painting tool. Sometimes he also spills paint directly from his cans. He used his technique to form a variety of random but always natural lines through the influence of gravity.

Pollock plays the underworld of being aware and a full examination of himself, in order to produce a bridge between accident and willfulness. In an untrue statement of his interview he chose to paint a beautiful thing and can be enjoyed like a flower, without the burden of meaning or a particular message; art for art sake.

Stop Judging Yourself

Judging yourself not being aware of abstract works won't help. It is the shackles of appreciation that need to be removed. It is better to skip the incomprehension and continue appreciation. Abstract painting does require a while more to digest.

Beauty is Subjective

If there is nothing interesting coming from the abstract work that we look at, it can be that it is not our taste. Maybe abstract isn't the kind of art we like.

 It could be that the work is of not good enough quality in our own subjective view. However, do not judge the work as good or bad especially first. It is better to try to find and watch various works of abstract paintings from other artists or come from various derivatives of other types of abstracts.

In this case, unless we always yearn to be aware of further abstract paintings, an objective view is required through the step of appreciation to art criticism. Evaluating artwork is not as easy as just looking at it at a glance. It takes more than one way of art criticism before carrying out an objective evaluation. 

Below is an article on appreciation and criticism of art that can be used to guide the evaluation of abstract paintings objectively and fairly.

Art Appreciation – Re-Creation of Works and Interpretation

Fine Arts Criticism – Formal Analysis, Interpretation and Assessment


1. Rudolph Arnheim, Visual Thinking, University of California Press, 1969

2. Mel Gooding, Abstract Art, Tate Publishing, London, 2000