Theabstract art between abstract art and contemporary culture has always been the focus of criticism. In the western academic world, except for people like Roger Rogers. Critics such as frye and greenberger are directly engaged in the criticism and practice of abstract art. Shapiro, merlo? Ponty, Roland? Bart and other art historians and philosophers were also involved in the abstract art movement of the 1950s and 1960s. It was under the impetus of criticism and theory that the avant-garde rebelliousness in the early years of abstract art was gradually replaced by the "legitimacy" of mainstream art, and finally became the mainstream art form in the west in the form of academy. On the contrary, the development of abstract art in China has not been so lucky. Among various restrictive factors, the lag of criticism and theoretical research is still an important reason. Since 2000, abstract art in China has come back to life with the increase of critical studies and exhibitions of abstract art. Critics such as gao minglu, yi ying, wang Lin, Yin shuangxi, wang nan-ming, huang zhuan, etc. all published their critical articles on specific topics, while gao minglu, li xianting, li xu, liu xiaochun, etc. all played a positive role in promoting the diversified development of abstract art by planning a series of exhibitions. Representative among them is critic gao minglu, who has made great contributions to the combing and research of Chinese abstract art through a large number of academic activities and seminars hosted by him in the past three years. Abstract painting has always been marginalized in the pluralistic pattern of Chinese contemporary painting, playing the role of "the other" for a long time. This was true during the cultural revolution, the new age, and even in today's diverse contemporary art scene. Abstract painting has been criticized in many aspects: the official art cannot accept it because it is opposite to the art that gives priority to the theme and praises the mainstream ideology; The reason why college art cannot fully accept it is that the existence of abstract painting actually challenges and rebels the legitimacy of the whole college's painting mode, which is centered on modeling, structure, image realism and plot narration. Modernism in the new wave period could not fully accept it, because traditional Chinese painting has not produced the soil of abstract art, abstract painting is only a reference to the western abstract art, just follow the western footsteps, and does not have the originality of language and painting ideas; The mainstream "pictorial" painting in contemporary China rejects abstraction, because artists generally think that abstract painting always consumes artists' enthusiasm for creation in the abstract schema, but fail to put forward constructive opinions on the construction of contemporary culture and the real life of China. As a result, abstract art is always moving on the edge.
In fact, since the 1980s, the development of Chinese abstract painting has always had a reference system of western abstract art. The internal reason is that after the end of the "Chinese cultural revolution" in 1976, the art circle began to come out from the "cultural revolution fine arts", get rid of the cultural function of art serving politics and mainstream ideology, and gradually restore the artists' creative freedom and rebuild the independent noumenon value of art. The external reason is that since 1978, the Chinese government has implemented the economic development strategy of "reform and opening up", and the economic reform accompanied by "emancipating the mind" is bound to learn from the west in the fields of culture and art. It is in this context that abstract painting has at least two meanings in China: first, it can restore the artist's creative freedom and reshape the noumenal value of art. On the other hand, due to the elitism, individualism and cultural rebellion spirit of western abstract art itself, abstract painting in China also had the cultural enlightenment color of rebellion against autocracy, longing for liberation and calling for freedom from the very beginning.
Although abstract painting in China has the reference system of western abstract art, due to the different social, political, economic and cultural contexts in China, abstract painting in China has its own value of art history and unique cultural significance since its birth.
Abstract painting in the early 1980s has easily acquired a new spiritual value -- avant-garde rebelliousness. In other words, the artist's choice of abstract painting actually means his choice of "rebellion". Because abstract art's betrayal of the traditional painting model and rejection of the official mainstream aesthetic interest add a kind of spiritual added value to abstract art -- the marginal identity against the mainstream, which also adds the avant-garde characteristics of abstract art. As for the abstract painting in this period, the art critic yi ying holds that, "abstract art is not an art problem from any perspective. Abstract art in China in the 1980s was first generated as an ideology. Whether abstract art itself is pure or not, the composition and expression of abstract art, the education and practice of abstract art and so on are not important.
In the mid-1980s, the Chinese art circle entered the peak stage of seeking modernism and cultural modernity construction, which was called "new art" in history. At this point, the fields of easel painting, oil painting, ink painting, painting, there were a lot of abstract painting, and on the language has entered the stage of the development of diversified, in addition to the western represented by mondrian, marxist-leninist has structure of "abstract", represented by kandinsky, pollock "expressive abstraction", Chinese abstract painting also widely absorbed "expressionism", "surrealism" linguistic features, truly realized the abstraction and the performance of the fusion. Among the artists, ding yi, yu youhan, gu wenda, li shan, wang chuan, meng luding, zhou chunya, ren jian, shu qun, etc.
Of course, the pursuit of cultural modernity embodied by abstract art is only a branch of the whole cultural enlightenment movement in China in the 1980s. With a series of political movements and economic reforms taking place in China in the late 1980s and early 1990s, abstract painting since the 1990s finally took on a new look due to the transformation of the cultural scene at that time.
Late 80 s, the China central academy studio four out of the contemporary abstract painting is typical of a generation, they with square white, Korean people as the leader of a new generation of abstract painter injected new elements of the modern oil painting art, at the same time four studio in opening elders WenLiPeng, GePengRen, with the help of the teacher constantly for the Chinese oil painting art field to create more creative abstract artist. Around 2000, Chinese abstract painting began to form a diversified pattern. In 2003, art critic gao minglu planned the exhibition of "extreme pluralism".
In the context of contemporary culture, the meaning of abstract painting has changed greatly. It is different with the form of rebellion in the early 80 s, is different with the pursuit of cultural modernity "modern art", and more in the 90 s, under the background of globalization for the localization of express have no direct contact, on the contrary, in the contemporary pursuit of multiculturalism, the core value more abstract art is an expression of personal, as well as the expression of artistic autonomy, individuality and independence to defend. As a result, the development of abstract art, with its diverse forms, such as expressive abstract, such as form, structure, abstract abstract, with diversified cultural pursuits, such as the protection of individual liberty and the pursuit of cultural modernity, reflections on global culture and the native consciousness, etc, together with the contemporary culture of China produced direct interaction, its shape value and its own cultural significance should be clear and certain.