In earlier postings on the “But is it art?” topic I looked at conceptual art, broadly conceived: the spawn of Marcel Duchamp, you might say. There’s another strain of art that has famously given rise to the query: abstract art.
An anecdote, from years ago at a reception for the opening of an exhibition of abstract art at the Columbus Museum of Art. I was contemplating a painting by Morris Louis (one of his Stripes series; see below) when another gallery-goer, looking disapprovingly at the offerings, remarked to me, “The rot began with the Impressionists”, conveying (I suppose) that when the Impressionists moved away from strictly representational art, the long slide began that eventually produced Kandinsky, Mondrian, Pollack, and all the rest, including Louis.
I don’t know why people like this guy go to exhibitions like the one we were at, but I slid away from him and went on to a CMA poster sale, at which I bought a reproduction of a (large) Louis Stripes piece.
Notes on Louis and then very briefly on abstract art.