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Wassily Kandinsky is regarded as the pioneer of abstract art. Kandinsky’s art analyzes form and colors from an inner experience. Color focuses on two elements: a physical effect and an inner soul resonance which is reflected in color touching the soul. Similarly, the art was concerned with spiritual transcendence and there was an artist as a prophet role. Additionally, he utilized music in his various arts as depicted in his book. This paper will analyze Kandinsky art using several of his works.
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Wassily Kandinsky art
In his art, Wassily Kandinsky explored the association between form and color to develop a visual experience that tied up the sight, emotions as well as the sound of the audience. Kandinsky saw abstract art as the model visual mode to express the inner necessity that is associated with the artist and convey universal emotions with ideas (Naves, 2009). In Black Spot I, Kandinsky displays this theme through parallel representation which he utilized to reveal the thoughts and actions of the woman in the streets of Moscow. Kandinsky art is an accurate representation of the abstract paintings that reveal a material world embedded with thought forms and auras (Stoker, 2012). Moreover, Black Spot I depicts a spiritedness that connects the thoughts of the artist with the audience. Wassily composed this abstract art creating its uniqueness in the inner sound of the things, and the artist further used this art to express the non-objective forms further to suggest the inexpressible via engagement with the art’s formal qualities (Faherty, 1992). Black Spot I convey a depth of human emotion through that transcends across cultural as well as physical boundaries (Stoker, 2012). Black Spot I was one of the landmark works of the artist who majorly utilized color to represent emotions rather than physical appearances, and later become a dominant theme of his works. The structures such as the buildings and houses as well as individuals were primarily used by the artist to reveal the depth of human emotion cutting across several cultures and boundaries.
Music additionally dominated Kandinsky art. The artist viewed music as the basic unequaled non-objective art form. Kandinsky believed that through music, images could be evoked in individuals’ minds solely on the hearing of sounds (Naves, 2009). Kandinsky used this dominant art form in the majority of the abstract paintings in which he stated in his book “Über das Geistige in der Kunst.” Kandinsky developed numerous abstraction theories and incorporated music in the paintings to develop same effects on the soul for aesthetic experience (Faherty, 1992).
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Kandinsky further emphasized that the typical abstract paintings forms and colors readability were related to the readability of musical notes. Through abstract art, the artists were capable of developing a genuine representation of the natural phenomena through the utilization of music. The artist further stated that abstract art made possible for individuals to hear the various forms and colors connoted by the sounds. In Über das Geistige in der Kunst, Kandinsky used the metaphor of the piano to depict the importance of music in abstract paintings (Weiss, 1985). He believed that for art to attain spiritual vibration the right keys which resemble color and form in painting, were to be played. He added that paintings with no forms and colors were only for the senses and was not spiritually activating. In music, Kandinsky believed art could reach a significant audience at one time, and the artist resembles the time in music with the content of art (Faherty, 1992). The objective of music in Kandinsky art was to develop object free, spiritually abundant art that indicated music with emotions in the unity of aesthetic experience.
Kandinsky art was additionally characterized by inspiring human spiritual consciousness that was significantly utilized for the betterment of the society. The artworks from the period of 1909 to 1914 were dominated by this theme and the artist modeled himself as a prophet who could elevate people spiritually through art. For instance, Über das Geistege was used various motifs to depict the spiritual quality of the art (Long, 1983). Kandinsky believed that both his semi-abstract and abstract art were crucial in gaining an appealing world for its spiritual consciousness (Zhang and Yu, 2016). These views concerning spiritual art form were equally shared by numerous scholars including Mark Franz and Rudolf Steiner who was a Christian Theosophist (Weiss, 1985). Steiner described the Kandinsky utopian values that were associated with his paintings such as Compositions and Improvisations as depictions of the patient age and which orchestrated spiritually uplifting. Although Kandinsky’s utopian visions as reflected in the art Garden of Love were equally for societal transformation, he was a non-believer of sex as an art. Instead of focusing on transcendence qualities of generative art, Kandinsky emphasized on the redemptive qualities of the spiritual art in his paintings. Kandinsky wanted to achieve spiritual utopia via his paintings, and his form of abstract art laid a foundation that offered the essential means to do that (Long, 1983). Kandinsky paintings laid the ground for other abstract artists to do such in a clear and more appealing manner.
- Faherty, M. (1992). Kandinsky at the Klavier: Stevens and the Musical Theory of Wassily Kandinsky. The Wallace Stevens Journal,16(2), 151-160.
- Long, R. W. (1983). Kandinsky’s Vision of Utopia as a Garden of Love. Art Journal,43(1), 50-60. doi:10.2307/776633
- Naves, M. (2009). Kandinsky’s hocus-pocus. The New Criterion,22-25.
- Stoker, W. (2012). Kandinsky: Art as a Spiritual Bread. In Where Heaven and Earth Meet (Vol. 45, pp. 45-75). Amsterdam, New York: Editions Rodopi B.V.
- Weiss, P. (1985). Kandinsky and the Symbolist Heritage. Art Journal,45(2), 137-145. doi:10.2307/776791
- Zhang, K., & Yu, J. (2016). Generation of Kandinsky Art. Leonardo,49(1), 48-54. doi:10.1162/LEON_a_00908