Conceptual Art

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Conceptual Art
It is an art movement in which the concept has a priority over traditional aesthetics. The concept or idea is the most important part of the work. Planning and decision making are made in the artist’s mind beforehand, and execution is a secondary affair.. It has been asserted that conceptual art questions the nature of art itself. One of the most important things to be questioned was the assumption that the role of the artist was to create special kinds of things. Conceptual art does not practice the traditional skills of painting and sculpture. It has come to be associated with forms of contemporary art. The problem in the seventies however, was the confusion between “concept” and the “intention” of the artist.
Conceptualism was initiated by the work of Marcel Duchamp, who produced examples such as “a fountain”, a standard urine basin,(rejected in the society of independent artists in New York). In traditional terms an object like this cannot be called art, since it was not created by hand with the intention of becoming an art item. His work had a theoretical impact for future conceptualists.
The term “concept art” was first mentioned in an article by the artist Henry Flynt. By mid-1970s there were several conceptual publications, performances, texts and paintings. In 1970, the first dedicated conceptual art exhibition, was presented at the New York Cultural Center.
The Conceptual art movement emerged during the 1970s. In part, it was a reaction against formalism as it was asserted by the famous art critic Greenberg. According to his beliefs, modern art should follow a progressive reduction and refinement . The task of painting, for example, was to define what kind of object a painting truly is: Painting depicts flat objects on canvas surfaces where coloured pigment is applied. However, perspective illusion is irrelevant to the essence of painting, and ought to be removed.
Conceptual art went to extremes by removing the need of objects altogether, sharing a distaste for illusion, whereas by the end of 1960s the need to exclude external objects no longer found supporters. The movement attempted to avoid galleries or museums as the determiner of art, or the art market as the owner or distributor of art. For a conceptual artist anyone who has seen one of his works, owns it because there is no way of taking it out of his mind. This sort of art is sometimes reduced to a set of instructions and descriptions, but stopping short of making it –emphasizing that the idea is more important than the artifact.
An important difference between conceptual art and more “traditional” forms of art goes to the question of artistic skill. The skill in the handling of traditional media plays little role in conceptual art. It is true that no skill is required to make conceptual art. It is not so much an absence of skill or hostility toward tradition, as a disregard for individual artistic expression.
The first wave of “conceptual art” movement extended from 1967 to 1978. Early “concept” artists like Henry Flynt, Robert Morris, and Ray Johnson influenced the later widely accepted movement of conceptual art. Conceptual artists like Dan Graham and Hans Haacke have proved very influential on subsequent artists. There is also a second or third- generation conceptualists. Many of the concerns of conceptualists have been taken by contemporary artists of installation art, performance art and digital art.