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Abstract Art - Main Features

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Abstract Art - Main Features

The 20th century surprised us with the arrival of new artistic movements as were expressionism, cubism, constructivism... They were currents misunderstood by many and is that they all had one characteristic in common and it was none other than going against the principles realistic. The abstract art is another of those artistic expressions that arises around the year 1910 where the representations of non-figurative forms made him one of the most important artistic expressions of the century XX.

Next, in this lesson from a TEACHER, we will see what the main characteristics of abstract art to somehow clarify a little what this type of art consists of, since it has been criticized by many throughout history.

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  1. What is abstract art?
  2. Main characteristics of abstract art
  3. Other characteristics of abstract art

What is abstract art?

Abstract art is an artistic movement born in Munich(Germany) back in 1910 by the hand of one of the most important Russian artists of the 20th century,

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Wasily Kandinsky, when making what would be the first abstract art exhibition that was called "Of the spiritual in art ”.

Abstract art, what was intended was to give a new point of view of reality, but from a very remote reality, based on shapes and colors, so that when you were faced with one of these paintings or sculptures they had nothing to do with the real world.

And it is that abstract art does not seek perfection or the representation of beauty as others did. art movements of previous centuries, abstract art completely refuses to reflect the world in which we live.

There are many theories wanting to explain why abstract art came about, we are going to reduce it to the following reasons:

  • You should know that art is sometimes a true reflection of reality, well, the artists of early twentieth century, involved in periods of serious economic and political crises, with a certain disorder Social… they felt a deep desire to get away from that reality that saddened them so much, and abstract art was the result of it.
  • Other reasons, was to believe that during all this time ago, reality was what had always been represented, for which, there would come a time when the topics would be exhausted. In that sense, it is when abstract art arises, a new way of understanding very subjective and particular reality.
Abstract art - Main characteristics - What is abstract art?

Main characteristics of abstract art.

Once we have seen what this type of art is, when it arose, what it consists of, we go on to see some of the main characteristics of abstract art:


Abstract art differs from the rest of the artistic movements prior to this, in the form of expression, and it is that while in romanticism or realism what the artist expressed were his own sensations or feelings, in abstract art what It is intended to express they are pure states, whether they are of consciousness and unconsciousness.

Freedom in the use of colors

Color in abstract art was, together with form, an artistic expression more, typical of this type of art. While for example in Cubism, his way of expressing himself was through forms reduced to geometric shapes, in abstract art, chromatic freedom, the fact of superimposing colors, of mixing them one on top of the other, with variations within it, of lighter and darker tones... it is a characteristic of art abstract.

In lacking ways

If for something it is called abstract, it is for that very reason, because there are no forms that represent reality, we want to look for something coherent in them, something that resembles people, elements that surround us in our world, without However, those shapes are sometimes nothing more than intersecting straight lines and curves or geometric shapes, but without any sense.

Abstract art - Main characteristics - Main characteristics of abstract art

Image: the world of abstract art - blogger

Other characteristics of abstract art.

In the previous section we have seen what is considered the main characteristics of abstract art, that is, the basis for making this type of art understandable, on the other hand, now we are going to see Other features that help us to complete what we do not understand and are:

Beauty as a concept

There are those who try to find something beautiful in abstract art, but always related to the closest reality, forget about that, abstract art is linked to the concept of beauty, in the work itself, and... you may like it or not.

Materials and technique

Materials is another of the innovations that will take place in abstract art as well as technique. Until now we had heard that it was painted with oils, watercolors, tempera, however, now, acrylic paint was the most used. In terms of techniques, one of the best known is the Action Painting which consists of splashing the surface of a canvas with paint in an energetic and spontaneous way.


Sometimes this type of painting can be accompanied by a title, to somehow make more understandable what the artist wanted to reflect, however, sometimes we will find that the artist has decided dispense with that titleIt is another way of emphasizing not referring to reality.

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