Pop Art

pop artAfter World War II, an art movement began to take shape in the United States and United Kingdom, both are influenced on popular mass culture, which would become one of the most influential styles of the 20th Century. It was aptly called "Pop Art."

Pop art is a visual art movement that challenged tradition because the artist used items associated with popular culture and joins it together with classical techniques. It is characterized by themes and methods that were based on popular culture like advertising, comic books, and everyday objects. The concept of pop art was not much about the art itself, but to the attitude that led to it.

It has been said that pop art was a reaction to the then-dominant movement about Abstract Expressionism, as well as an expansion upon them. Pop art aimed to employ popular images as opposed to what is perceived as "elitist" culture in art, with an emphasis on the trivial and tacky elements.

How pop art developed in the United States and Great Britain differed on its origins. In America, pop art marked the comeback of the use of hard-edged painting and representational art through impersonal, mundane reality, aiming to defuse the concept of abstract expressionism as being symbolically personal and painterly loose.

By contrast, pop art in post-War Britain was more academic in nature, focusing on the dynamic and paradoxical imagery of the prevailing popular culture of America. The British practitioners of pop art viewed American pop culture as powerful, manipulative symbolic devices that affected whole patterns of life, all while improving prosperity to society.

The first work of pop art that achieved such an iconic status was a collage created by Richard Hamilton entitled, "Just What Is It that Makes Today’s Homes So Different, So Appealing?" Made up of magazine clippings featuring a home with Modernist furnishings and a lot of appliances including a television, reel-to-reel recorder, and vacuum cleaner, it was first displayed in London on 1956.

Another popular example of pop art is "Campbell’s Soup Cans," which is sometimes referred to as "32 Campbell’s Soup Cans." This series of thirty-two separate canvases, each consisting of a painting of a particular variety of Campbell’s Soup can that was being sold in early 1960s, was created by Andy Warhol using semi-mechanized silkscreen process.

Image Source: Wikipedia

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