What Role Does Art Have In Our Society?

You may not think it, but art does play many roles in society, and art speaks to different issues at different times. We see this in many spheres of society such as science, religion, history and politics. Whether there is an introduction to an international dance movement, or putting a spin on a Bach piece, or even providing visuals interpreting a war – art is everywhere.

How do artists convey their thinking in society?

Artists have provided and continue to provide thought-provoking voices and perspectives of various global ideas. You may think of this as only individual artists having opinions about certain global phenomenon, however, art organizations do too. They look at complex subjects and address them with analytical thinking, whilst conveying the power of art itself. They also tend to showcase their art in public areas within their communities, so that the public are aware of their thinking and start to think of topics like religion, history and politics in a lateral manner.

Why is art important in society?

People forget that art has a significant impact on the discourse of cultural, social and global concerns. Art shows the work done by various artists in relation to the civil society. Artists and art organizations also have the power to educate communities on the power of art in relation to a specific struggle they may be going through at that point in time.

In history, movements have sought to destroy scandalous art in relation to political or religious topics. This prevented artists from doing things such as using religious figures in their visuals. For example, Adolf Hitler destroyed modern art that he found threatening at the time. He also used visuals such as documentary films as propaganda for the Nazi movement. This shows the power of art and how it can interest society to think from the inside out as well as be used by leaders as manipulation. Art sparks ideas and challenges the norm, which is why it is often seen as a threat by leaders in the world for many years.

Where does art exist within society?

You may find many dance theatre shows, music concerts and art galleries showcasing work that is directly related to the world at that moment. It is important to understand that is art is there to complement and disrupt society – art is not something that exists in a vacuum of its own. Art reflects society and therefore reflects civil rights, government, sexual liberation, history and many more elements. Art can expose communities to various viewpoints and can cause controversy.

Art in society is designed to create exposure to the correct audience and showcase opinions in a safe manner. Sharing physical spaces with communities allow for people to see things differently and engage with others on topical content, which they never thought they would ever be able to speak out about. Our society matters, and it is important to have an element like art in it to always test the waters and see issues from every angle. It brings relevance and realism to society, which is what we all need.

The Best Art Exhibitions of 2017

We’ve taken the liberty of listing the best and most awaited art exhibitions for 2017. Keep an eye out and remember to add these to your diaries for the upcoming months, to experience a world of contemporary, innovative art.

Robots

This stunning exhibit showcases the technological power behind robots and their long-lost mystery within the science fiction realm. With inspiration from Leonardo da Vinci himself, who manufactured a mechanical monster in order to impress the King of France, this exhibition looks at everything from the Renaissance era to human’s latest attempts at automata.

Science Museum London, 8 February – 3 September

The American Dream

If you enjoyed the pop art movement, this one is for you. Andy Warhol’s great work has never gone unnoticed and this sparkling exhibit showcases American art, famous artists and what they stood for as pioneers within their age. It tells the story of American society, over and above just American art with the likes of references to Kara Walker, Ed Ruscha and Jasper Johns.

British Museum London, 9 March – 18 June

Michelangelo and Sebastiano

These two major collaborators showcase the Pieta for San Francisco and the Raising of Lazarus which were painted for the Cathedral of Narbonne. This collaboration shows the bond of friendship between these two giant artists and their work can be seen at this extraordinary exhibit.

National Gallery London, 15 March – 25 June

Volcanoes

Volcanoes bring together the history of science and art. From the very first volcanologist from ancient Greek times, to the modern study of volcanoes, this exhibit showcases all the thinking and discovery through the eras. Showcases of work from Joseph Wright of Derby through to William Hamilton and Andy Warhol – this exhibit is surely not to be missed.

Bodleian Library, Oxford, 10 February – 21 May

America after the fall

American art comes with some of the classics such as Grant Wood’s American Gothic. This type of art is showcased and expressed in an exhibit about the Great Depression and how the historical time affected and influenced American art. Realism was a major movement at this time and this then transformed to abstract art with artists like Jackson Pollock and Edward Hopper featuring majorly. Don’t miss the daunting journey through a once a broken America.

Royal Academy London, 25 February – 4 June

California

Everyone knows that California and design complement each other in the best way possible over years. This exhibition looks at how mid-century modernism has changed the course of art in California and what it stands as today. The exhibit looks at work from the 1960s all the way up to today’s technology with iPhones, bringing together the thinking of history to self-driving cars and how Californians got there.

The Design Museum London, 24 May – 15 October

Louvre Abu Dhabi

Abu Dhabi has invested in a massive 18billion pound Louvre that hovers over the water on Saadiyat Island. The complex was designed by French Jean Nouvel and has been built over the past ten years. Although this exhibition house is nowhere near ready to exhibit, it may be worthwhile keeping a watch on its progress over 2017.

 

 

Photography Tips for Beginners

If you’re looking to start photography as a hobby, or even something that could be a profession one day, you be thinking to yourself that it could all be rather daunting. Well, photography for beginners may sound like it’s a challenge and a half, but with these helpful tips you’ll be on your way to capturing stunning photographs before you even know it.

Don’t be afraid to get to know manual mode

Yes, manual mode is possibly the most difficult, and when most of us look at cameras we tend to want to use the automatic mode. By using manual mode, you get to learn your camera, and all its settings. Give it a try, soon enough you’ll come to realise how best to shoot in varying lights and landscapes.

Learn the intimidating lingo

When you look at your camera and its settings you may come across words like ISO, shutter speed and aperture. These all sound Greek to us and may be difficult to understand at first, but it is imperative that you do understand the definitions and practicality of each of these words – after all, they will become second language to you eventually. Here’s a quick breakdown of the definitions:

ISO – this refers to light settings. The lower the ISO number the less sensitive your camera is to the light. So if you’re shooting at midday, you will be exposed to a large amount of sunlight and will need a lower ISO level. It’s almost like a light switch or side lamp. Also remember that the lower your ISO level, the clearer your pictures will be. This is the reason why many photographers say that it is best to shoot during the day in a room, when natural light is at its optimum.

Shutter speed – this is the amount of time that the shutter of your camera is open. A slower shutter speed will allow increased light to enter the lens and vice versa. Use slower shutter speeds when you have low light and a faster shutter speed setting when you already have optimal lighting, and want to capture movement.

Aperture – this fancy word refers to focus. The setting will help you adjust the size of the opening in your camera lens. The lower the F stop (the measurement of aperture) the more in focus one aspect of the picture will be. This refers to those gorgeous visuals with a focal point close up and a blurry background. Use higher F stops for images where you need focus on the background.

Get a tripod and use it well

If you’re still at the very initial stages of photography, you may think that a tripod is not something to purchase right now. Wrong. A tripod is one of the most useful tools when you take photographs, because it holds your camera absolutely still. You can slower shutter speeds way down and allow much light through on a steady standing. Tripods are also great when you have your image ready and want to run in to be in the picture yourself.

While you’re trying to find your own technique, make sure you follow some good photographers on social media platforms like Instagram – you can learn ideation and technique from their work which is always helpful. Photography is meant to be unique, artistic and fun. So don’t be too hard on yourself and have fun playing!

Most Popular Modern Painting Techniques

The most popular modern painting techniques involve that of mostly, abstract art. Action art or abstract expressionist art was invented on the emphasis on spontaneous and emotional content that is not necessarily based on reality. The movement gained popularity within the 1950s and acted as a reaction to McCarthyism. This movement allowed artists to express themselves wholly without having the fear of being accused of empathising with the communists. Abstract art was a movement that spoke to exploring the spirituality of life and bringing in creativity in a free manner.

How to get started on a modern art piece

It’s important to try and learn as much of the movement prior to doing an abstract piece yourself. The work of other artists and the thinking behind this work will help you get into the right mind-set, and by understanding the ideology that drives the movement, you will be able to understand the work and create your best piece of modern art. Each and every abstract painter expressed themselves in their own way – from the Jackson Pollocks to the Hans Hoffmanns of the world.

Gather materials for a unique, expressive, modern piece of work

Once you have researched modern art techniques, it is important to gather the correct art materials and make sure you have enough space for your work. Modern art takes into account paint, but also materials like coins, bottle caps, glass and string. Don’t be afraid to incorporate these materials if you see fit – they add texture, meaning and a stunning 3D effect. You can also apply paint with paint brushes, or use knives, spoons, sticks or string to apply the paint for varied texture.

Get ready to start painting!

Plan the visual in your head and get ready to start creating a masterpiece. Remember that modern paintings are usually very large and this is the reason why the image should be pre-planned. Modern art can be spontaneous, but there is a decent amount of planning that should be done. Think of the size of the canvas, the colour combinations and the focal points on the image. The image should always mean something to you personally.

Use your body and put all your energy into it

Whilst painting using the modern art movement, you want to use the likes of abstract painters’ techniques such as using odd materials and using your body. Use a large canvas and don’t be shy to get on your knees. Use your arms, legs and torso to bend, creating unique shapes in your main visual. There are plenty modern art techniques that allow you to use water colours in a unique way, with blotchy or very vague visuals too. In modern art, you can manipulate paint pigment how you want, and use it to the best of your ability in relation to the rest of your visual.

Remember, modern art is more for you than for anyone else. People may not like your art – and in modern art movements that’s alright. This is about you, your spirituality and your take on life and the world.