Figurative art usually comes in the form of paintings and structures. Also known as figurativism, the term tends to be contrasted with abstract art. This is because figurative landscapes depict certain features that can be distinguished, whereas an abstract landscape will only suggest the subject matter without representing it explicitly. Consequently, ever since the abstract form of art was introduced, the art world refers to any direct reference to real life as figurative. To put it simply, figurative art is whatever type of modern art that makes reference to reality, especially the human being. It demonstrates the shape of objects, perceptions, and places to create a likeness. Think Pablo Picasso and his 1939 Weeping Woman. This concept is connected to abstract art in the sense that they both share a subject matter but figurative art is more general because it applies retrospectively to all art before the arrival of the abstract art type. Figurative artists try to reflect the world they live in through personal experience and their interpretations of real life. Keep in mind that figurative art is not a synonym for figure painting, however. Figurative art depends on formal elements such as colors, shapes, lines, mass, volume, light and dark, texture, and perspective. These are elements that can also be applied in the creation of non-representational artwork.

Written by
Pamela Raseni