Famous Conceptual Artists Over the Years

Famous Conceptual Artists

If you are a patron of conceptualism or conceptual art, there are many artists that you should know about. Before knowing the artists, it is imperative that you completely understand the notion behind the conceptual art. Conceptual art gives importance to the idea more than the aesthetic and technical aspect. It is all about the “ideas and meanings” instead of “work of art” that includes paintings and sculptures.

It is characterised by text, imagery, photography, video, projections, sound and many more.  In other words, conceptual art can be anything. In 1917, Marcel Duchamp presented a porcelain urinal at the Society of Independent Artists in New York. He named it Fountain but the society rejected it saying that it is not art. It was until the time of Sol LeWitt who advocated that the notion of genuine art is not a unique object created by the artist but it is the concept or idea behind its creation.

Now that you are aware of the basics of conceptual art, it is time to know the famous conceptual artists. Here’s a list:

Yoko Ono

In 1964, she published “Grapefuit (1964): Book of Instructions and Drawings”. It gave detailed instructions on how to gain aesthetic experience by cutting and eating grapefruits. She later became the wife of John Lennon.

Sol LeWitt

In 1970, he created “A Wall Divided Vertically into Fifteen Equal Parts, Each with a Different Line Direction and Colour, and All Combinations”. Instead of making the wall drawings, he produced instructions with text and diagrams outlining how the wall drawings could be created.

patron of conceptualism

Douglas Huebler

In 1970, he created an exhibition of twelve photographs. These photographs were taken every two minutes while he drove his car in twenty-four minutes.

Mary Kelly

In 1975, she created “Post-Partum Document. Analysed Markings And Diary Perspective Schema (Experimentum Mentis III: Weaning from the Dyad)”. Mary Kelly documented her relationship with her son for 6 years.

Christopher Williams

In 1989, he created “Angola to Vietnam”. The artwork was composed of monochrome photos of specimens from Harvard Botanical Garden. The specimens were selected according to countries that witnessed political vanishings in 1985.

Felix Gonzalez-Torres

In 1991, he created ‘Perfect Lovers”. He put two identical battery-powered clocks that were initially set at the same time. However, the artwork showed that they fell out of sync as the days passed. The art’s message is the inevitable loss of connection.

Tracey Emin

Tracey Emin is a popular postmodern artist. In 1999, he created an exhibit he called “My Bed”. The exhibit featured an unmade bed with personal items around like bedroom slippers, condoms, bloodstained panties, and bottles.

Loris Greaud

In 2005, Loris Gréaud created a project named “Silence goes more quickly when played backwards”. He quickly rose to fame after this project. In fact, international critics refer to him as one of the most influential artists in this generation. In 2008, he created the “Cellar Door” project, which started from Palais de Tokyo, Paris and continued it in ICA, London then Kunsthalle Sankt Gallen, Switzerland, Conservera de Murcia, Spain and finished it in Vienna Kunsthalle, Austria. In 2015, he created “The Unplayed Notes Museum” that occupied the entire space of the Dallas Contemporary in the United States.