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Is the art that springs out of the present-day events and passions of the society.
It is the newest form of art, amusing people from the middle to the late 20th century up to this very minute.
Authorities in the arts place the emergence of contemporary art sometime during the start of
postmodernism in the West, around the late 1970s. This was the time when artists reacted to the previous
art period called modernism, whose idea of using a pure, simplified and a streamlined form and style was
fundamental in creating something new at that time. This gave birth to the idea that less is more.
Contemporary art is produced by the 21st century artists living in the postmodern age. It functions in a
global society that is culturally diverse and technology-oriented. For one thing, it provides instances for
people to reflect and respond to contemporary social concerns and issues pertinent to themselves and to
the world.
For another thing, it is a combination of mixed styles, materials, techniques, and concepts that challenges
tradition. It has gone into the mainstream and into the communities. It has become a collaborative process
and the audience plays an active role in reacting and constructing meaning about the work of art.
Contemporary art is essential to you not only because it belongs to your time, but it also serve as a form of
expression of the peoples present feelings and longings.
Contemporary works of art are the means through which the artists of today communicate their


Modern art emerged in the late 1800s and continued to grow for more or less a century. It slowly waned
in the middle to late 20th century when postmodernism came to light. Postmodernism then gave birth to
what we know now as Contemporary art. This art exists up to this day, and no one knows when a new
period will arrive to veil contemporary art in its shadow.
Modern art developed as styles and techniques, whereas contemporary means with the times (con
tempo). Thus, contemporary arts refer to the art of the present time.
Both modern art and contemporary art use modern issues as subjects for their art works, whether it is a
still life, an ordinary daily activity, or a far more serious social issue like human trafficking or war. Personal
thoughts are also common subjects. However, many believe that contemporary art is more socially
conscious than modern art because more social issues have been realized in the recent decades.
Examples of the most popular contemporary subjects are feminism, globalization, migration, and
environmental concerns.
What also makes contemporary art different from modern art and the other art periods is its never-
ending originality. It is the form of at which one cannot easily classify. Modern art, although free than the
older periods, paved the way to now popular movements.

In contemporary art, not only movements can be integrated into an artwork. Even seemingly different
art categories can be melded together to produce an integrated or combined art.
This crossbreeding in the contemporary scene has resulted in a hybrid art called integrative art. These
art forms are interactive and multidisciplinary in nature, that is, consisting of ideas and practices from
different branches of learning- the outcome, being the unity of separate areas of learning.


Generally speaking, a subject or topic is any person, animal thing, or issue that described or represented
in a work. It usually generates the questions, what is it? Because people expect to see or hear subjects
that they can recognized or are familiar to them. Subject is different from theme or content; Theme is
recurring idea or elements in a work of art. The theme refers to the ideas, thoughts, and feelings of the

REALISM The first style is Realism in which the subject is done the way it actually looks. An
example of this is the painting of Araceli Dans.
DISTORTION The second is Distortion wherein the artists uses his or her imagination and alters
the subjects according to his or her desires. A stylized work is a form of distortion like Norma
Bellezas painting.
ABSTRACTION The third is Abstraction wherein the artist breaks part a subject and rearranges it
in a different manner. In science, it is the process of analysis and synthesis. Pablo Picasso innovated
this style in the early 1900s. The paintings of the National Artists Vicente Manansala belong to this
NON-OBJECTIVISM The fourth style is Non-objectivism wherein there is totally no subject at all -
just an interplay of pure elements like line, shape, or color, and so on. A good example of non-
objectivism is the painting by Roberto Chabet.


1. Line
Is associated with the bodys axis as it moves toward different directions and adjust to a
point of reference through various positions and actions, such as walking, running, standing, sitting,
reclining, etc.
In the visual arts, it also refers to the quality of the line, whether thin, broken, thick, or
blended, among others. When several lines come together, they create texture, which can be very
thin, washed or very thick, rough or fine.
Line is the extension of a point, a short or long mark drawn or carved on a surface. It is an
implied path suggesting
a. Direction: vertical, horizontal, diagonal.
b. Character: jagged, curved, series of dots or broken lines.
It is easy to pinpoint line in painting, drawing and other artworks of the similar type. But,
in other types of art, such as performing arts and literary arts, a line is described differently. In
theater, a line may refer to the script of the actor. In dance, it is the series of steps that a dancer

2. Color

Is associated with our experiences of cold and warmth, and the quality of light in our
tropical environment, the cycles of night and day, of darkness and light. One of its aspects is hue,
which has to do with how light waves of various lengths and rapidity of vibrations bounce off
objects and enter our eyes.
A hue is said to be warm when it has longer wavelengths and is more distinct and easily
discernible, for example red, orange, and yellow.
Cool hues such as blue or violet have shorter wavelengths, and seem to merge into each
other. Warm colors seem to advance toward us; cool colors appear to recede.
Probably the most striking art element that catches the eye is color. It is a sensation created
by visible wavelengths of caught in a prism. It is a mixture of organic or synthetic substances called
pigments, used as paint or dye.
Color creates a mood or tone, such as red for passion, anger, or love; blue for peace,
nobility, or sadness; and yellow for gaiety, innocence, or jealousy. Color also varies from dull to
bright, depending on its intensity, like in music, where intensity can also refer to the loudness or
softness of a sound.
Color can also have different meanings, depending on ones culture.

3. Value

In visual arts, value is the degree of lightness and darkness of a color.

In music it is called pitch, which is the highness or lowness of a tone. The tone color or timbre refers
to the quality of the sound.
Like color, value suggests an atmosphere or mood, also found in other art forms (e.g.,
strong contrast suggests a strong emotional response, especially in writing).

4. Texture

T exture is the surface of an artwork. A texture can be actual or tactile, meaning it can really
be felt by touch; or it can be simulated illusory, which means it can only be seen, not felt.
In music or writing, texture is the quality or style of a composition. The sounds from different
musical instruments allow one to hear texture in sound.
These elements are the basic tools of expression in any art form. They can be found in
nature and in a man-made environment. Artists use, arrange, and manipulate them to express
feelings or mood and to convey their message to the viewers, listeners, or readers.

5. Space

Space in visual arts can be defined as a void, an emptiness which can either be positive or
negative. The positive space refers to a space enclosed in a shape, while the negative space denotes
the opposite.
Moreover, in other art forms, space can be referred to as an interval or pause. In literature,
it is the pause between words, whereas in music, it is the interval between notes.
6. Movement

It may occur in two-dimensional design as rhythm or through the recurrence of motifs,

their alternation or progression unfolding in a series. Movement is also very much related to line,
and the direction of the eye.

7. Shape and Form

When the ends of a line meet, they form shape. Shape can also be described as figure
separate from its surrounding area or background. It can either be geometric (angular) or organic
Form is slightly similar to shape. It is an enclosed line, a figure separates from its
background. But, remember that shape is two-dimensional, while form is three-dimensional. For
instance, the square is an example of shape; the cube is a form. The circle is a shape; the sphere is
a form.