The following is an overview of 7 major trends developing within contemporary art, as well as links to resources and key words.
1. New Media Art: This category includes links to digitally produced works, new technologies for creating and sharing artworks, Net. Art (which cannot exist beyond the internet), Second-life, and Avatar/virtual reality settings for artistic creation and experience. New Media can engage an audience asynchronously through the contribution of comments or synchronously through the use of live chat rooms and social media.
Technology as Art (Robotics)
2. Art in the Everyday : This category refers to art based on common, mundane objects and moments. It relates to “Kitsch Art” in the sense that the objects may not be of high value or the moments may not be elevated to unusual importance. This term also refers to “making something out of nothing,” working with reclaimed and repurposed, found or discarded objects from everyday life.
Mundane, Banal Objects Re-visioned
3. Interdisciplinary Art: This category includes art and learning/teaching techniques that cross between traditionally separate disciplines such as combining art and science, art and technology, art and politics, art and ecology, or art and history. Visual mapping is a way that artists can work collaboratively with scientific or technology experts to visualize information or data in a new way.
Art and Science
Art and Technology
Visual Mapping (translation of data into visual form)
Art about Education
4. Globalization, Social, Political: This category includes art that addresses cultural, social and political issues on a global scale. Looking at an issue from various global perspectives makes the world more local and accessible. Artists also engage in technology that allows the global world to be more locally accessible, and raise awareness about humanitarian issues across the global community.
Art for Social Change
5. EcoArt & Post-Consumer Art: This category includes art that is based on ecology and raising awareness about environmental issues, artists may also include outdoor education or environmental reclamation projects. Post-Consumer can also refer to artists who create solutions for the re-use of discarded or natural materials in unique ways.
Found Objects Repurposed, Post-Consumer
6. Altered Place: This category is devoted to artists who work outside of a traditional gallery or museum settings and aim to activate, alter, and engage public spaces. Graffiti is one type of public marking using images or lettering on private property. Alterations to public places can engage interactivity and/or transform ones’ experience of places they frequent. Artists may alter sacred or environmentally precious places often with the intention of making work that is site-specific.
Street Art (Murals, Graffiti, Tagging, Chalk Art)
Public Sculpture (Urban Parks, Sand Sculpture)
Urban Projection Mapping
7. Interactive: This category includes all works that focuses on the interaction between people to generate meaning and message. These works are often performances and require the participation of a specific audience, and therefore are non-reproducible and difficult to document. The artistic focus is on the importance of the experience, the process rather than the product, and the communication of ideas through the work. Relational Aesthetics can also be orchestrated online or asynchronously through New Media.