If we look at Monet’s Impression, Sunrise and at the following works of Impressionist artists, we will see not only certain concepts but also some beautiful, aesthetically pleasing images.
Then, gradually, works of art changed and the concept of beauty changed, too. Can Picasso’s Guernica be called a masterpiece? Certainly. Can it be called beautiful in the traditional, classic sense? Not exactly.
In Picasso’s works for example – and in Cubism as a whole – reality is not what the artist sees but what he himself creates. The idea of this style is to take reality, destroy it in your imagination and then recreate it on the canvas. Other styles of the late 19th and early 20th century also took a novel approach to reality – Dadaism and Surrealism, for example. Marcel Duchamp worked in both styles and his works also represent this change.
The third change in the definition of art is the growing role of political and social views in artistic works. This is the case with Dadaism, mentioned above. Rejection of traditional artistic values was for Dadaists a way to reject traditional social and political values which, according to them, led to World War One.
This change is visible not only in the visual arts but also in music. The music of the 19th and 20th century had a significant social element. The specific ideas may be different around the world but the general change is the same – social ideas were reflected in music. For example, styles like gospel, soul, and spiritual have all evolved in the social context in which African people lived in America in 19th century.
If we take a look at what buildings looked like in the past (in the Antiquity, in the Middle Ages, in the Renaissance, and in the Enlightenment), we will see their elaborate beauty. Buildings were meant not only to be used according to their purpose, but also to be admired. Therefore, they had ample ornamentation and numerous details.
All the changes described above bring about e