The world is diverse, and it’s full of subcultures that express themselves through art and its resonance with a niche crowd. While there are plenty of art subcultures, here are four examples with some common values and like-minded behaviors.
“Kilroy was Here” in street art culture
Graffiti and street art are significant subcultures within communities. Likely because graffiti has a wide range of expression, and it can include writing, drawing, or painting on the surface of a structure.
And as it traces back centuries, but became especially popular during World War II when soldiers wrote “Kilroy was Here” on public surfaces as they marched through Europe. And that early meme has passed through multiple generations, vast locations, and unique audiences as understood state of mind.
More modern-day graffiti artists create stylized words or artwork, usually with aerosol spray cans and inner-city populations. The goal of graffiti art is to send a message and assert the artists’ existence to the world. One of the most famous street artists, Banksy, uses his art as an almost ambivalent relation to social activism.
Minimalism is one cultural norm that’s picked up traction in the past few decades. However, it’s been a growing population since the 1960s. The goal of minimalist art is to showcase beauty through simplicity so that what you’re seeing is what you get.
Common themes you’ll see in minimalist include simple geometric shapes, patterns, or even contour lines that lack shading. Forms and figures aren’t meant to express anything more than what you see on the surface.
There are plenty of minimalist drawings, paintings, and sculptures. Still, fans of the minimalist style and subculture may even get tattoos in the minimalist style too.
Surrealism is one subcultural identity that is established and probably won’t be going anywhere anytime soon. The now mainstream culture of surrealism was particularly popular during the 20th-century. Artists sought to show ordinary life in a “strange” or “dream-like” way that transcended the realism of daily activities.
Some of the most famous surrealist include:
- Pablo Picasso
- Frida Kahlo
- Salvador Dali
- Marcel Duchamp
- Andre Breton
If you’ve ever mistaken a piece of art for an actual photo, you’re most likely looking at the photorealism style. These experiences focus on using specific photographs for their skill and replicating those references with as much precision and accuracy as possible.
The subjects of photorealism can vary, but it’s not uncommon for artists to mimic objects or create photorealistic portraits.
Famous photorealistic artists that helped transform the history of subculture include:
- Chuck Close
- Audrey Flack
- John Baedar
- Gerhard Richter