For Collectors of the Fine and Decorative Arts

What is Contemporary Art?

Contemporary art is art produced at this present point in time or art produced since World War II. The definition of the word contemporary would support the first view, but museums of contemporary art commonly define their collections as consisting of art produced since World War II.

Throughout the 20th century and into the 21st century, with the advent of Modern and Postmodern art forms, distinctions between what is generally regarded as the fine arts and the low arts have started to fade, as contemporary high art continues to challenge these concepts by mixing with popular culture.

Contemporary art is exhibited by commercial contemporary art galleries, private collectors, art auctions, corporations, publicly funded arts organizations, contemporary art museums or by artists themselves in artist-run spaces. Contemporary artists are supported by grants, awards and prizes as well as by direct sales of their work. Source: Wikipedia

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  • Features From Previous Issues

    Drawn Together

    Drawing is to the visual and design arts what mathematics is to the sciences—a lingua franca that serves, across disciplines from painting and sculpture to fashion, architecture and industrial design, as a widely expressive language in which creative types of all kinds can jot down their ideas and efficiently share them with each other. Traditionally, drawings have been works made with various media on paper, including different kinds of cardboard. Continue reading

    The Pursuit of Prints

    Here in their high-rise Upper East Side apartment with sweeping views of Central Park, Leslie and Johanna Garfield, the husband-and-wife collecting team, could always use that extra square foot for their latest acquisition. Six years ago, in order to accommodate their growing collection, the apartment underwent a four-year renovation before the couple moved in. Today the home doubles as a private gallery, with specially constructed hallways and sliding walls, conservation space, and an office for an in-house cataloger and registrar. Still, there never seems to be quite enough room. Continue reading

    The Red and the Black

    By Dan Hofstadter Mark Rothko insisted that his contemplative art was the stuff of high drama. Why? Mark Rothko liked to hold forth. As a listener, you may have found his harangues enlightening, infuriating or “banal,” as Clement Greenberg did, … Continue reading

    Traditions and Transgressions

    By Aline Brandauer In Santa Fe, contemporary art moves forward in conversation with the past. In a place as saturated with diverse artistic traditions as New Mexico, the creative process is bound to involve a complex dialogue with the past. … Continue reading

    Passage to India

    A long lunch is ending on a short autumn day, as late sun streaks the dining room of London’s Chelsea Arts Club, where two monuments of Indian art are catching up on a decade spent apart. Syed Haider Raza, 88, and Maqbool Fida Husain, 94, go back 60 years to 1940s Bombay, where they pioneered modern painting in India. Their most recent works are hanging together again, first at a preview at Art London and then at a major exhibition in December, and the occasion is worthy of a reunion. Continue reading

    Collecting: And Still They Rise

    African-American art has come a long way since 1876. In that year, at the Centennial Exposition in Philadelphia, artist Edward Mitchell Bannister won the bronze medal, the top prize for painting, but was denied the chance to attend the award ceremony when officials realized he wasn’t white. Exactly 100 years later,Two Centuries of Black American Art, a groundbreaking show that appeared at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the High Museum in Atlanta, the Museum of Fine Arts, Dallas, and the Brooklyn Museum, raised public awareness and was followed by scores of others that examined art made by African-Americans. Continue reading

    Plugged In

    When Thomas Edison invented the lightbulb in 1879, he had no clue that one day it would become a medium for art. Indeed, he probably couldn’t have conceived of it; when listing 10 ways his new phonograph would improve the world, he ranked “reproduction of music” fourth, behind dictation, audiobooks and teaching elocution. Continue reading

    Crystal Clear

    In 1291, the rulers of Venice ordered all glass foundries to relocate to the little island of Murano, about a mile to the northeast of the main cluster of islands, because of the fire hazard they posed to the city’s wooden buildings. Ever since then, the island’s name has been synonymous with hand-blown, luminously colored, deftly crafted glass. Continue reading

    Today's Masters: The Bridge Builder

    Just outside a former pipe and piano factory in London’s Camden Town, several tons of rusted steel and iron scraps sit parked like refugees from the Industrial Revolution. Acquired from junkyards around Europe, these twisted bits of detritus and mysterious machine parts serve Anthony Caro as the building blocks of his brand of modernism—one that has elevated the 85-year-old British sculptor into the upper reaches of art history. Continue reading

    Outside In

    Russel Wright’s longtime home and studio, Dragon Rock, was built along a rocky slope overlooking the Hudson River about an hour north of Manhattan. The designer envisioned Dragon Rock as a modern country retreat that melds unnoticed into 75 acres of oaks, ferns, white pines, wildflowers, streams, moss, meadows and Chevy-size boulders. “His key philosophy in developing and creating Manitoga (meaning, ‘place of the great spirit’) was to live in harmony with nature, and he achieved this by blending the indoors with the outdoors,” says Lori Moss, assistant director of the Russel Wright Design Center Continue reading