The Complexity and Pureness of Abstract Art

The Complexity and Pureness of Abstract Art

The Complexity and Pureness of Abstract Art

©Michel Keck

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© Michel Keck from Within Striking Distance - abstract painting
A short time ago I was having a discussion with a woman who made the comment that an artist working in art forms other than abstract required more serious attention because it wasn't like those artists were, "just slapping paint on a canvas".  I smiled and agreed with her dig at abstract art, not because I believed 1 ounce of it, but that I just choose not to argue with those who make ignorant comments. 


When asked the question, "what do you do for a living?", it takes thick skin to confidently reply that you are an artist.  It takes riding inside the bullet proof popemobile to proudly proclaim that you make your living as an 'abstract' artist.


Abstract art, often misunderstood as mere splatters of paint on a canvas, is actually a complex and nuanced form of creative expression that transcends conventional artistic boundaries. The misconception that anyone can create abstract art overlooks the profound depth and skill required to execute it successfully.  I actually appreciate comments like "my child could do that" because those that make those statements inadvertently touch upon an essential truth: abstract art taps into the pure, uninhibited essence of creativity, very similar to a child's unfiltered approach to self-expression.  There is this famous Pablo Picaso quote: Every child is an artist; the problem is staying an artist when you grow up”.  I am happy to say I have kept that connection with my inner child and I believe it shows through in my art.


At its core, abstract art is not about replicating the tangible world; rather, it invites viewers to delve into the intangible realms of raw emotion and imagination. The seemingly spontaneous strokes and vibrant colors that define abstract pieces are not haphazard; they are deliberate choices that I believe are made from an internal source that comes out through the artist very instinctively and automatically.  Some people do not have a connection with that source, abstract artists do.


Creating impactful abstract art goes way beyond the technical expertise taught in traditional art schools. Unlike realistic or still-life painting, abstract art cannot be taught in the same structured manner. It is a form of artistic expression that relies heavily on the creator's emotional intelligence, intuition, and the ability to channel their innermost thoughts onto the canvas.


The misconception that abstract art is a free-for-all often stems from a lack of appreciation for the intricacies involved in the process. Successful abstract art is a delicate dance between chaos and control, an exploration of the artist's inner world translated onto the canvas. The strokes, textures, and colors are carefully orchestrated to evoke a range of emotions and provoke thoughtful contemplation.


Moreover, creating impactful abstract art demands a certain level of fearlessness and the willingness to embrace vulnerability. The artist must be unafraid to expose their innermost feelings and thoughts, laying bare their soul for the world to interpret. This raw authenticity is what separates profound abstract art from mere decorative abstraction.


In essence, abstract art thrives on the fusion of technical skill with a childlike purity of expression. It is about unlearning the constraints of societal expectations and tapping into the uninhibited creativity that resides within each of us. While comments about a child's ability may be intended as dismissive, they inadvertently highlight the purity of spirit required to create art that resonates deeply.


I wholeheartedly believe that abstract art is a sophisticated and multifaceted artistic genre that demands a deep connection with one's inner self. Some people are highly in tune with their inner self and others never are able to connect with it..  I believe the ability to so easily connect to that internal source is one aspect that helps create a good abstract artist.  I also believe the ability to connect to that internal source also helps one be able to better appreciate the form of abstract art.  Abstract art is a form of expression that cannot be confined to the boundaries of traditional teaching; instead, it is a journey of self-discovery, emotional revelation, and the fearless pursuit of authenticity. So, the next time someone dismisses abstract art with a casual remark, remember that the true beauty of abstract art lies in the profound complexity hidden beneath the surface of the creation.

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