Page 1

what is

Mo d e r n i sm?

Modernism is a term used for an art movement that is the offspring of modernity; the social and environmental change that took place between 1750 and 1960 in Europe. Modernism has ideals which look to the future and not to the past. This is known as ‘anti-historicism’. Modern artists’ main focus was to produce art that was focused on function and not appearance. The simple terminology used for this is ‘form follows function’. The Industrial Revolution, early 20th century art movements including cubism and futurism and the urbanisation of populations are cited as some of the influences of modernism. Other modernist ideals include ‘internationalism’ and ‘truth to materials’. Internationalism refers to the idea that art should be universally recognised on an international basis. Truth to materials refers to the notion that materials used should be truthfully represented; no material should represent another. For example, a wooden chair would not be disguised as a steel chair. If a steel chair is wanting to be represented, steel should be the material used.


graphic design