Pop Art was an art movement that emerged in the mid 1950’s in Britain, and in the late 1950’s for the United States. The British artists were the product of the independent group (IG), formed in 1952. The members resisted the institute’s commitment to modernist art, design and architecture. It was the Americans however that really gave increased awareness and success in the Pop Art movement.
Pop Art used the visual commodities of popular culture within the movement of fine art. English Critic Lawrence Alloway used the term ‘pop’ as art that made use of objects, materials and technologies from mass culture, to bring out the yields of the industrial society. It was characterized by themes and techniques drawn from popular mass culture; such as comic books, packaging, advertising, television and film.
Pop Art evolved at a crucial time in society, post World War II, which saw an enormous economic growth. This was the beginning of commercial manipulation, celebrities and exhibitionism. It wanted to bring art back to the people in their everyday lives, working with simple everyday objects.
Around 1962 Pop Art established itself as a serious recognized art form. It marked the end of modernism and the beginning of the postmodern era. It merged the divide between the fine arts with the media and advertising commercial arts; a divide that had been prominent for hundreds of years. Pop Art soon became one of the biggest movements of the 20th Century. It was beautiful, polished and glamorous, even though it was mass produced on a low budget; it caught the changes in society perfectly.
Andy Warhol was one of the biggest American Pop Artists around. It was Warhol’s paintings that made him so famous worldwide. His painting of Campbell’s soup tins which was used commercially has become extremely well known. As well as his screen-print of Marilyn Monroe which depicts Warhol’s own insight on American fame.
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