All you need to know about the Blackest Black – Vantablack

Since its invention back in 2014 Vantablack, the color dubbed the world’s blackest black captured the attention of the media and various artists around the world. The material described by Anish Kapoor as the color “blacker than anything you can imagine” or the color “so black that you almost can see it“1 aims to revolutionize […]

Perespective in Art – Conjuring the Space

Since history can remember, artists have attempted to recreate the three-dimensionalities of the world. Aided by tools such as perspective in art, golden ratio, rhythm, variety, line, and the rest of the art’s elements, artists wrestled with Nature and its laws. The word perspective, when applied to art, signifies the accurate depiction of objects from […]

Why Courbet’s The Origin of the World is so popular—and it’s not what you think

Our most-read story of 2016 was about Facebook’s legal battle over the French master’s work. Here’s why it still causes a stir, 100 years on. Gustave Courbet’s The Origin of the World (1866) a painting of a woman’s “lower groin” (bas-ventre), as the writer Edmond de Goncourt coyly described it in June 1889, is as […]

All Printmaking Techniques in One Place

While most types of artworks are identified as individual pieces that can never be completely replicated, printmaking techniques make an exceptional set of practices that possess the ability to create multiple copies of a single piece of art. As such, pieces of printmaking are considered original artistic works despite the fact such artworks can exist […]

Everything You Need to Know about the Certificate of Authenticity

Apart from offering human kind the possibility to express its imaginative and technical skills, art has also evolved to become proper trading business. As such, it has a market of buyers and sellers, but it is the certificate of authenticity or COA that represents the most important aspect of the circulation of artworks today. Over […]

What Was Suprematism? A Brief History of the Russian Idealists Who Created Abstraction as We Know It

At an exhibition entitled “0.10” (“Zero Ten”) in St Petersburg in 1915, Black Square (completed in 1913), the first Suprematist work by Kazimir Malevich (1878–1935), hung in the corner of the room, the traditional setting for an icon in an Orthodox Russian home. The artwork was a square canvas painted black. Malevich claimed in 1927 […]

Is this the very first readymade?

Three million years before Duchamp, an ape-like humanoid in Africa found a stone that is now going on display for the first time at the British Museum.  When Marcel Duchamp turned a urinal into art just by declaring it so, he steered the history of art on an entirely new, conceptual course. But the lineage […]

Curator Hans Ulrich Obrist on What Makes Painting an “Urgent” Medium Today

Painting has always served as a kind of laboratory for innovative ways of looking at the world, from the perspectival experiments of Alberti all the way to Impressionism, Cubism, Surrealism, abstraction,Minimalism, et cetera. Painters often saw themselves as an advance guard, pushing a kind of investigation forward in new terrain. Here, you’ve mentioned how in […]

David Hockney on what turns a picture into a masterpiece

Rembrandt’s perfect drawing, Caravaggio’s invention of Hollywood lighting, Monet capturing a moment in time. David Hockney and critic Martin Gayford discuss the craft behind the greatest art. David Hockney: The moment you put down two or three marks on a piece of paper, you get relationships. They’ll start to look like something. If you draw […]

Who’s Afraid of Conceptual Art?

Dr James Fox has never really got conceptual art. And he’s not alone. Conceptual art has been treated with suspicion and incredulity by virtually everyone outside the art world for nearly a hundred years. Ever since Marcel Duchamp first displayed a signed urinal and claimed it was art in 1917.  So was he taking the […]

More than Melting Clocks: 10 Surrealist Masterpieces You Need to Know

Among radical 20th century art movements (of which there are more than a few), Surrealism is one of the few that’s been able to establish a hold on the popular as well as avant-garde imaginary, in no small part due to the outlandish public persona of its self-proclaimed ringleader Salvador Dalí. What’s sometimes forgotten, however, […]

100 Years On, Why Dada Still Matters

“How does one achieve eternal bliss? By saying dada,” proclaimed the poet, musician, and theater producer Hugo Ball in the summer of 1916, as World War I raged on. “How does one become famous? By saying dada…How can one get rid of everything that smacks of journalism, worms, everything nice and right, blinkered, moralistic, Europeanized, enervated? By […]

Lapis Lazuli: A Blue More Precious than Gold

The first blue pigment to hold its color was often prized over gold. The semi-precious stone lapis lazuli was ground into an iridescent pigment, sometimes called ultramarine, that seemed to shine when applied to the canvas. The first known use of it as a pigment goes back to 6th and 7th century BCE wall paintings in Bamiyan, Afghanistan, the country where […]

What Was Fluxus? A Brief Guide to the Irreverent, Groundbreaking Art Movement

Fluxus was a loose confederation of international artists in the 1960s working in performance, painting, sculpture, poetry, experimental music, and even correspondence art (art sent through the postal service). It was often, though not exclusively, political in tone. Fluxus works shared similarities with the “Happenings” of Allan Kaprow, particularly in the way they blurred distinctions […]

7 Great Artist Duos That Shaped Art History

While the lone wolf artist has long been romanticized for its singular (if not god-given) genius, the creative duo has also, many times over, recast the shape of art. Below, we explore seven of art history’s game-changing partnerships during the 20th century. For these pioneering artists—from Christo and Jeanne-Claude to Marina Abramovic & Ulay—collaboration was […]

9 Wacky and Wonderful Found-Object Sculptures From Across Art History

When Marcel Duchamp made his “Fountain” by elevating a men’s room fixture to a plinth in a gallery, he encouraged artists to consider the selection of non-art goods as part of the creative act. The gesture may not look as radical a century on, but it continues to inspire; today, you might walk into a […]

Top 10 – Appropriation Artworks

Appropriation art or the art of appropriation is is the use of pre-existing objects or images with little or no transformation applied to them. It follows in the spirit of Marcel Duchamp’s Readymades. The use of appropriation has played a significant role in art throughout the 20th century and has continued as a valid art […]

Why Does Art History Have the Blues?

Why do artists always seem to have the blues? Since time immemorial, blue has held a special place in art history, evoking the loftiest sentiments, the most aristocratic pedigrees, and the profoundest spirituality. As a material, blue pigment has itself been a fetishized commodity, serving as everything from a prized color for Medieval monks to the […]