Contemporary Sculpture and Social Commentary

Although contemporary art refers to art of both the late 20th and early 21st century, it has experienced a resurgence in popularity over the last few years. People who are new to the art world are often attracted to this form of sculpture because it tends to speak to their situations and lifestyles in a way that art doesn’t always do. Many artists specializing in contemporary sculpture are making a statement about the current state of our world, and present a commentary on our priorities of modern society. One style of contemporary art that may people are widely familiar with is “pop” art as exemplified by the work of Andy Warhol.

One such artist who utilizes art to provide social commentary is world-renowned sculptor Robin Antar. She creates works of art out of everyday items such as denim jeans as well as household and food products. By making these dispensable items essentially timeless by capturing them in a form that will last for a very long time, she is demonstrating the importance of the everyday.

This is the key difference with certain forms of contemporary sculpture that sets it apart from other forms of art. By creating a 3-dimensional object that simulates a common object that could be found in most households, many people are now finally able to relate to art in a way that may have seemed out of touch in the past.

Although each artist creates art for their own reasons, it could be argued that one of the reasons that some artists are attracted to the contemporary style is because they able to communicate to the art admirer on a very basic level. This is especially important because many people may find fine art to be intimidating or difficult to understand. In some situations, this may be because the piece of art is very personal to the artist and the artist may find it challenging to express themselves in a manner that is inclusive. In fact, many people feel that art is not meant to be completely understood, and can at the most only be appreciated from a distance.

However, when an artist decides that they will take a common object and represent it in different form than it is usually seen, they are making a point of building a relationship with the observer. Because the sculpting process allows the piece of art to last indefinitely, the disposable becomes for all intents and purposes, permanent. This fact combined with an ordinary, everyday object chosen as the model for the piece of contemporary sculpture ensure that this type of art can be appreciated by both the very sophisticated and the admirer who is new to the art world.

Not all forms of art necessarily seek to express social commentary, but in many cases, contemporary art does fill this void. In particular, contemporary sculpture can create an opportunity to see a common object in a very different manner that allows you to question your assumptions and possibly understand the art and the artist in a way that previously seemed impossible.

Author: Robin Antar

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