Understanding contemporary art 101

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It is often quite embarrassing to admit there is a blind spot in your general culture on something that is considered so fundamental and so elevated: the ART.

Fear not, you are not alone in this struggle. The turning point of art, becoming “way too complicated” for nearly every non-artsy person I happen to know is the XX century. Up until 1900s, have you taken a basic “Art 101” back in primary school you would most likely know how to tell a Da Vinci from a Monet (I would hope).

It is the modern and contemporary, aka produced after the turn of the XX century, that up to this day raises questions (and brows) among many.

Here is the thing: while enjoying art may seem like something effortless and abstract, in reality the art knowledge is not intuitive.

Understanding art is an acquired skill one must nurture and develop over time, often through struggle and self-discipline: not much different from learning how to code or learning a foreign language.

Is it worth the effort? Absolutely.

Discovering the art world as well as the vast sea of concepts and ideas presented by the artists in relation to the Anthropocene, have the transformational power and ability to inspire beyond any other creative resource. Next time you want to think of a corporate activity to boost the moral of your troops? Think art class, museum visit or an art movie.

Counterintuitively, to understand art you don’t have to be “born that way”, you simply have to put in the work. Don’t know where to start? Try this or this, or even this.

And thank me later.

Written by
Maryna Rybakova