10 Tips for Viewing Abstract and/or Non-objective Art

10 Tips for Viewing Abstract and/or Non-objective Art

 

  1. ‚ÄčPlease do not look for an image... there is none.  Artists want you to have your own experience with each piece.  As you view a work, ask yourself what does this mean to me?
  2. What do you feel?  What mood or memory is triggered?  Do not overthink it but give your attention to the first thought that comes to mind.
  3. Are there any colors, shapes, textures or marks that captivate your attention?  Look for subtleties that are not prominent.
  4. What dominates the piece?
  5. Is the piece energetic... is it positive...  do you want more of it in your environment and in your life?
  6. Does the title of the painting have meaning for you?  Can you make a connection between the title and the piece?
  7. Is there a story or interpretation behind the piece?
  8. You are in charge of your opinions...  don't let the wine sway you.
  9. A painting doesn't have to match the sofa, but it's certainly okay to consider how it would look.  It's your home or workplace.
  10. Even though Artists learn to accept rejection, they are very sensitive.  Please refrain from stating that your 5-year-old could do that or that you see a chicken when it has nothing to do with chickens.  If you cannot say something nice, don't say anything at all.

By all means, just enjoy the artwork and consider the amount of thought and love the artist devoted to it.

*Revised from Artist Donna Mulholland's article Ten Ways to Look at Abstract & Non-objective Art