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which created buildings such as La Sagrada Família and physically altered the city of
Barcelona, endowing it as the centre for modern architecture in Spain.
In 19 century Britain it is the work of John Constable and Joseph Mallord William Turner who
demonstrate the changes in Landscape art. Combined, the two artists explored and developed
the styles of the Barbizon school and Impressionism which were seeping over from France.
Both artists developed a free style of painting which was to greatly influence Landscape art,
although it was different in both style and content. Turner’s landscapes strove for the
atmospheric, while Constable concentrated on creating the physical actuality of his subjects.
The works of Turner and Constable were the first Landscape works to create a significant
impact in Europe and elevate Landscape art to a new level.
The Twentieth Century 1900 - 2000
The 20th century was a time of internationalism for Europe. The century began with economic
depression, the rise of dictatorships, the Russian Revolution and rise of Communism, all of
which preceded two world wars. Post-war Europe emerged a very different place, void of
empires and full of revolutionised technologies such as the motorcar and information
technology, television, and photography, and towards the end of the century the internet. All of
these revolutionised communication, while the invention of the motorcar and the plane created
ease and frequency of travel. In short the world became smaller and more in reach of the
European artists. 20th Century art can be seen to evolve both in the light of these changes and
under the influence of a confidently self-aware society. This can be seen in the rapidly
developing and changing art movements of the era.
Early 20th century art is comprised of a rapid progression of symbiotic new art movements.
Modern Art, as the group is generally termed, begins with Modernism in the late 19th century
which transformed the Impressionism of the earlier century into more abstract and expressionist
works. The first 20th century art movements evolved directly from the Impressionists of the 19th
century in the form of Fauvism in France. The characteristics of this movement were its
heightened use of non-representational colour in figurative painting. Abstract or nonrepresentational art developed about the same time and was led by Kandinsky in Munich. While
in France the similar movement of Cubism, led by the works of Picasso, introduced the idea of
multiple perspectives into one painting. The Dadaist movement, and its most famous advocate
Marcel Duchamp, rejected conventional art styles entirely and instead exhibited found objects.
Dadaism quickly evolved into Surrealism with the work of Salvador Dali. Meanwhile the Futurists
were rejecting the old and looking to the future. As enthusiastic exponents of the success of
technology over nature they set about creating innovative images and architecture full of
movement and machine age imagery.
The 1950’s saw the focus of European art shift to the West and refocus on America’s
interpretation of expressionism. An evolving movement of Abstract Expressionism produced
some of the most influential artists of 20th century art in Mark Rothko and Jackson Pollock.
America was also responsible for the development of Pop Art and artists such as Andy Warhol,
whose production of commercial imagery on a massive scale diminished the role of the artist