Modernism is an art movement that took place at the end of 19th and in the 20th century. It denied the common forms of art, literature, architecture, social organization, religious faith, and everyday life. Modernists thought that those conventional forms could not compete with the new conditions in the economics, politics, and society. The period of modernism movement includes the different styles that are defined as modernistic and have similar theories on different spheres of life, so lets read essay about modernism for university and college students.
The key ideas of modernism
Modernists believed they could create a better world. Artists were trying to find absolutely new forms of expressing their views and feelings. This movement could serve as a great example of the series of experiments in the art. Modernism in literature started its existing by the influence of urbanization and industrialization. As a literary movement, modernism is considered to begin after World War I. The horrors of the war had weakened the people’s faith in the bases of Western society and culture and the literature of Modernism expressed this image of disappointment and disintegration.Order now
A good example of the early modernist literature is a poem The Waste Land, written by T. S. Elliot. It is full of the search for recovery and revival in the spiritually empty surroundings. Like all the others Modernist works of literature, this poem allows the reader to interpret the sense in his own way. This is the significant feature of all modernistic literature works: giving the reader the right to give his interpretation.
The remarkable point in the development of Modernistic movement in literature was made by the publication Ulysses created by an Irish writer James Joyce. This novel gives the details of one day in three Dubliners’ life and does this through the use of the famous technique called stream of consciousness. This technique avoids the usual structure of the sentences and fragmentarily shows the process of the writer’s thoughts. For some scene, this novel was forbidden in the English-speaking countries for many years. Among others, writers who decided to reject the common order of narration in their works were Virginia Woolf, Gertrude Stein, Marcel Proust, and William Faulkner. All of them significantly arose the topic of psychology in literature.
What is the modernist poetry?
Modernist poetry could be defined for its concrete imagery. One of the most significant figures that made a great influence on the development of modern poetry was W. B. Yeats. He abandoned the rhetorical poetry that was extremely important in the Victorian era. In 1910, there was found in poetry the Imagist movement. Its founders were Ezra Pound, Richard Aldington, and Hilda Dolittle. The Imagist movement accepted free rhythms and simplified language.
Modernism movement was also involved in many other kinds of art including music, sculpture, architecture, and others. In music, the composers tried to use not tested before variants of tonality. Dancers replaced the established traditions with the new forms and the famous innovators in this sphere were Rudolf Laban, Émile Jaques-Dalcroze, and Loie Fuller. They had developed a modern dance, studying specific aspects of dance. The theatre of its time is famous for the term “Theatre of the Absurd.” This term was used to explain such plays that show the meaningless of the human’s existence and were full of illogical speeches that ended with silence. Playwrights whose plays could serve as vivid examples of the Theatre of the Absurd are Samuel Beckett, Tom Stoppard, Daniil Kharms, and lots of others.
Visual art had also influenced radical changes under the Modernism movement. The foundation of Modernism in the visual art is connected with the name of an artist Édouard Manet. He broke the established rules that were prominent to the art and changed the view on the modeling, perspective, and subject matter. There were lots of different modernist movements including avant-garde, Impressionism, Post-Impressionism, Futurism, Cubism, Expressionism, de Stijl, Constructivism, and Abstract Expressionism. All of these movements are different from each other having their other specific peculiarities. However, there are some points that make them similar and allow collecting them all under the term Modernism. Artists that were working in those periods were struggling to avoid the traditional notions and to make a greater focus on the color, lines, form, and other features of their work.
The sculpture was involved in Modernism in a similar way. A prominent figure that is connected with the modernist sculpture is Henry Moore. His bronze monuments are famous around the world and are usually huge abstractions of human figures. He sculptured mother-and-child figures, family groups, and reclining figures each of which are characterized by hollow spaces and piercing. Among others sculptures that had world recognition were Francis Bacon, Frank Auerbach, Lucian Freud, Michael Andrews, Leon Kossoff. All of them belonged to the “London School” of the figurative painting.
The similar situation was in the sphere of architecture that was also influenced by the modernist movement. Architects started radically rejecting of all the past styles that existed before the war. Actually, the development of architecture was influenced by the increasing industrialization and the list of new inventions. There appeared new building technologies and the new tendencies were defined as an international style. This style required simplified geometric shapes and plain, undecorated facades, rejecting the use of any historic elements. The examples of such styles are Le Corbusier’s and Ludwig Mies van der Rohe’s buildings, made with glass and steel. At the end of the century, this style was improved to the plain skyscrapers made with glass and huge housing complexes.
Modernism as an art movement was a reaction of abandoning the traditional forms and rejecting all the established notions. Artists expressed in their works a deep disappointment of the humankind in reality after World War I. They were struggling to find something new, radically avoiding the traditional fundamentals. In fact, it is the period of the experiments that influenced all the spheres of art. Its main focuses were the freedom of expression, radicalism, and primitivism. The authors created their works without strict purpose to tell something to their audience. In modernism, the audience is free to interpret any creature in its own way.