Project: "Exploring Modernist Art: Investigating, Understanding, and Creating"



Modernist Art


Modernist art is a style that emerged in the late 19th and early 20th centuries as a response to rapid societal changes brought on by industrialization, urbanization, and the traumatic events of World War I. This movement sought to break away from traditional forms of art and explore new, innovative ways of representing the world.

Some key characteristics of modernist art include a focus on the artist's subjective experience, a rejection of realism, and an emphasis on experimentation and abstraction. Artists during this period were often interested in exploring the process of art-making itself, rather than simply depicting the external world.

Modernist art can be seen as a reflection of the tumultuous times in which it was created. Artists were grappling with the disorienting effects of modernity, and their works often convey a sense of fragmentation, alienation, and disillusionment. However, modernist art is not solely about despair. It also celebrates the potential for renewal and the power of the individual to shape their own destiny.

Importance of Modernist Art

Modernist art has had a profound influence on the development of art and culture in the 20th and 21st centuries. Many of the techniques and ideas pioneered by modernist artists continue to shape contemporary art practice.

Modernist art also challenged traditional notions of what art could be and who could make it. This spirit of experimentation and inclusivity has helped to democratize the art world, making it more accessible to a wider range of people.

Studying modernist art can also enhance our understanding of history and society. The themes and techniques explored by modernist artists often reflect the social and political context in which they were created. By examining these artworks, we can gain new insights into the past and the present.


To delve deeper into the topic and start your journey into Modernist Art, here are some reliable resources you can consult:

  1. Khan Academy's course on Modern Art
  2. The Metropolitan Museum of Art's resource on Modern Art
  3. BBC's guide to Modernist Art
  4. The Art Story's page on Modern Art
  5. Books:
    • "The Shock of the New: Art and the Century of Change" by Robert Hughes
    • "Modern Art: A Very Short Introduction" by David Cottington
    • "Art in Theory 1900-2000: An Anthology of Changing Ideas" edited by Charles Harrison

Practical Activity

Activity Title: "Modernist Art Explorers"

Objective of the Project:

The objective of this project is to investigate, understand, and represent the key characteristics and influences of modernist art. This will be achieved through research, group discussions, and the creation of original artworks inspired by modernist styles.

Detailed Description of the Project:

In this project, you and your group members will become "Modernist Art Explorers". You will delve into the history and influences of modernist art, study the techniques and ideas pioneered by modernist artists, and create your own artworks in a modernist style.

Necessary Materials:

  • Art supplies (paper, paints, brushes, pencils, etc.)
  • Access to research materials (books, internet, library)
  • Project report template (to be provided by the teacher)

Detailed Step-by-Step for Carrying Out the Activity:

  1. Form groups of 3 to 5 students: Each group will be a team of "Modernist Art Explorers". Make sure your group is diverse, with members who bring different skills and perspectives.

  2. Research modernist art: Use the resources provided and any additional sources you find to research the history, influences, and key characteristics of modernist art. Discuss your findings with your group and take notes.

  3. Select a modernist artist to study in depth: Each group should choose one modernist artist to focus on. Research this artist's life, their major works, and the techniques and ideas they explored. Discuss how this artist's work reflects the key characteristics of modernist art.

  4. Create a group presentation: Based on your research, create a group presentation that introduces your chosen artist and their work, and explains how they represent the key characteristics of modernist art. Be sure to include images of their artwork to illustrate your points.

  5. Create original artworks: After your research and presentation, it's time to get creative! Each group should create at least two original artworks inspired by their chosen modernist artist. These artworks should reflect the key characteristics of modernist art.

  6. Write a project report: After completing your artworks, write a project report following the provided template. This report should detail your research, the process of creating your artworks, and what you learned from the project.

  7. Present your artworks and findings: Each group will present their artworks and findings to the class. This presentation should include an explanation of your artworks and how they reflect the characteristics of modernist art, as well as a reflection on what you learned from the project.

Project Deliverables:

At the end of the project, each group will submit:

  1. A group presentation on their chosen modernist artist and their own artworks.
  2. A written project report following the provided template.

The written report should include:

  • Introduction: Contextualize the theme, its relevance, and real-world application. State the objective of the project.
  • Development: Detail the theory behind modernist art and the main points discussed in your research. Explain the activities carried out in detail, the methodology used, and present the artworks created. Discuss the results obtained and the learning process.
  • Conclusion: Revisit the main points of the project, explicitly stating the learnings obtained and the conclusions drawn about modernist art.
  • Bibliography: Indicate the sources you relied on to work on the project, such as books, web pages, videos, etc.

Remember, the goal of this project is not just to create artworks, but to deepen your understanding of modernist art and its significance. Your written report should reflect this journey of exploration and discovery.

Iara Tip


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