Minimalism, Maya Lin and Vietnam Memorial Discussion
“Minimal art is characterized by its simplicity in both form and content, where personal expression is removed in order to achieve this. The intention of minimalist artists is to allow the audience to view a composition more intensely because the distractions of theme etc. have been removed”. Minimalism can be detected as early as the 18th century where the artist Goethe constructed an Alatar of Good Fortune that consisted of a stone sphere and a cube. In addition, in the 1920’s artists such as Malevich and Duchamp created works that suggested at minimalist intentions. “The Minimalist movement is similar to Conceptual Art in that the outcome is used to express a theory. Minimalism is also similar to Pop Art because of the impersonal attitude, and Land Art because of the use of simple forms. Minimalist artists of the time reacted against Abstract Expressionism, which is demonstrated by the stark canvases, simple installations, and minimalist sculptures. Some of the most famous minimalist artists include Dan Flavin, Carl Andre, Donald Judd, and Ellsworth”. When Maya Lin won the design contest to build the Vietnam Veterans Memorial at the age of 20, she became the center of a great controversy. Many people protested that Lin’s design was too simple, that it look like a big black scar on the earth. Quite a few people were offended that a Chinese American student was the architect of a major American memorial of an Asian war. Lin was accused of being a communist by conservative political columnist Pat Buchanan. Here is a great article about this topic: http://www.usvetdsp.com/maya_lin_wall.htm 1) Her art is a perfect example of minimalism. The point is to remember people fought in the war and immortalize them, so there is no other distracting things including nationalistic and patriotic objects, people only focus on the names of soldiers who fought and this makes the monument more unbiased and I think it totally...
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