Essay About Modern Art: Basic Tips

Abstract Painting

Modern art has practically become a joke, considering how hard it is to understand. There are a lot of stories about people that have mistook it for trash or just people who use some incomprehensible paintings just to get money. However, if you are to write an essay about modern art, do not despair! There are a lot of facts that could change your view about this topic and make you see some interesting features that are worth writing about. We hope that this article will give you a better understanding of modern art and some ideas on how to write about it in an original essay.

How to Understand It?

Here are some phrases that you could say about modern paintings, as they evoke miscomprehension among most people. We suggest changing the perspective and see what it is really about.

It Is Too Simple

Comparing to classic art, modern art does not always have a topic or an object that you can clearly identify. Classic art has often depicted religious scenes, people, platters of fruit and so on. These are all themes that are easy to identify.

Whenever we see an abstract painting of shapes or colors, we tend to compare it with the classic art we have seen and immediately discard it as something too simple. However, this does not mean that the idea behind the painting is truly simple.

What do those colors make you feel? How would you describe them? Why did the author choose such a theme? What do they symbolize for you? You could spend a few minutes looking at the painting and surrender to the feelings that it evokes, instead of looking for a clearly identifiable theme in it.

Anyone Can Draw That

Whenever you look at some abstract lines, a circle or even a wooden chair at an exhibition, a traiteur thought arises in your mind “I could do that! Anyone could!” However, you should note that you did not!

It was the author who did it and found the sense in what he or she did. Most modern artists did not start their career with simple forms, they came to the discovery after years of experimentation and search. If you look at Picasso’s earlier works, you will be surprised to find realistic portraits of people in a classical manner of painting. And even though you could easily copy a modern work because the materials used are few or the depiction is easy, it does not mean that the depth will be the same.

It All Looks Similar

Identical Twins

If you go to a gallery and see the paintings that all have the same set of colors or forms, you may be disappointed. However, modern art is about experimentation. Most artists want to find out something new in every step along the way. This is why there are the same forms and colors used over and over again, because repetition and discovery are important to them. In classical paintings there is a variety of themes, however in modern art there is a variation of try-outs, of searching, of discovering.

What to Write About in Your Essay?

Now that you have analyzed some misconceptions about modern art, it is time to think about your essay. These are some topics that you could choose for it.

An Artist’s Journey

As we have said in the previous paragraphs, modern art is about looking for something new. Most artists have studied art since they were kids, and all got immersed in the process of painting, starting from classical themes, portraits, nature mort or landscapes. How has the thought process of the artist deepened with time? What has he or she discovered? How have his or her paintings changed? You can conduct some research and find out many new things to consider.

Materials Overflow

In modern art anything can become art. Indeed, now popular exhibitions include installations made of practically anything: you could find not only 3D paintings, but statues out of garbage, different household materials, furniture and so on. The list of materials is endless. So, in your essay you could concentrate on the definition of art and what it implies, on the possibility of using all kinds of materials to create something new.

Color Schemes


If you want to analyze paintings deeper, think about the perception of colors. What kind of hues do artists tend to use to convey different emotions? Describe how people have viewed different colors throughout history. Has red always symbolized passion, blood, desire or war? Your study could enlighten many on better understanding of this issue.

Your Perspective

If you are still hesitant about accepting modern art, do not be afraid. Your opinion is also valid. In such case, you could still write an essay that provides the argument against modern art. Describe your encounters with it, and how you still do not understand it after learning more about it.

Provide a contrast with classic art and present your reasons why it is better. Remember, as long as you have tangible arguments, you can protect your opinion. If you are at a loss, here is an article that helps you pretend to understand art.

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