Essay on Art Criticism and Art History

2671 Words Dec 24th, 2010 11 Pages
Art criticism and Art History

Case Study: The use of assemblage and the found object in historical and contemporary art practice.

The origins of the practice of assemblage can be traced back to its early twentieth century roots based on ideas presented by Dadaists. The Dada movement was a literary and artistic movement during the First World War and further developed as a non-art movement. The main idea of Dada was to not follow a uniform rule of what an artwork entails in order to be valued. This movement was significant in the development and history of art as it challenged society with new ideas therefore provoking change in our perspective of what can be classified as aesthetically pleasing and all the possibilities of what art
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Duchamp’s works are both seen as postmodern as they use postmodern conventions such as appropriation and parody (as seen in L.H.O.O.Q) and recontextualisation in ‘Fountain’ (above).

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The re-emergence of the found object in pop art was significant in the development of the history of art as it reinforced previous ideas presented by the Dada artists of aesthetics and of what society will accept as an artistic work.
The re-emergence of the found object in pop art looked at artworks using contemporary theories and knowledge that were established in the 1980s to challenge traditional and modernist ideas, which was exactly the aim of the Dadaists. It is due to the challenging of contemporary perceptions of art in which the found object would be considered a postmodern practice in its time.

Found art (also known as Ready-mades) is a description of art created by modified and undisguised objects that are not considered art for the main reason of their non-art function. The art created by these found objects convey meaning through their context, assemblage/composition and by the artists intention and approaches taken to montage pieces together.

The use of assemblage and the found object in Pop Art practice became an artistic trend and is exemplified by Robert Rauschenberg where he combines installations with the assemblage of large physical objects and commercial photography to form ‘Combine’ in 1963. Rauschenberg…

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