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Conceptual Art

  Conceptual art was a loose umbrella term which gained currency in Western arts criticism during the 1960s. It described a variety of art forms which placed emphasis not on the material presence of the work of art but on its ‘conceptual’ meaning. (The approach was analogous to new criticism in literature.) In practice, this threw up a variety of activities from Performance Art and Body Art through to minimalism. Much of this work was directed at exploring the conventional limits of art through the deployment of a range of anti-art practices. Conceptual art is often abstruse, uninterested for the most part in audience comprehension, and designed to inspire indifference. The intention is that experimenting with unorthodox art forms will turn attention away from questions of representation and mimesis towards the reality of the work\'s conceptual framework. The sceptic may still want to ask what the conceptual artist will despise as irrelevant questions: (1) What is ‘art’ for?, and (2) Does conceptual art fulfil that purpose, whatever it may be? KMcL MG PD

Further reading D. Krishna, The Art of the Conceptual: Explorations in a Conceptual Maze over Three Decades.



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