Contemporary and Modern Art – what are they exactly?

„Football boot“, Günther Uecker, Germany, 1972

Understanding Modern Art

Modern art is the term given to styles and movements from the late 19th century to around the 1950’s, including Expressionism, Cubism, Surrealism, Futurism, and even the beginning of Abstract Expressionism. This post-industrial revolution period was rife with technological advances, world-changing inventions, and sweeping political change.

Consequently, many artists active during this time incorporated themes relating to these issues and made use of new inventions such as photography. Although many artists continued to work with traditional materials and in a style consistent with previous trends, the period gave birth to many artists that favored new modes of expression. This fresh spirit can be seen in a variety of works produced during this lively period, whether it is in Cezanne’s opposition to Impressionist aeshetics or later in Duchamp’s “Readymade” sculptures created from found objects.

> View upcoming auctions

Daniel Richter (b. 1962), Zur Einheit durch den Wald, 2004

Understanding Contemporary art

Contemporary art has traditionally described art produced after the 1950’s, ranging from anything from Pop art to Graffiti art. However, considering the problematic lumping of so many different movements together, another term, “Postmodern art” could be used to describe that pivotal period in the 1950s and 1960s in which abstract expressionism, op art, performance art, minimalism and so many other movements were active in an increasingly diverse and global society.

Strictly speaking, the term Contemporary art now refers to art produced by artists living and working in the late 20th and 21st century. These individuals come from diverse backgrounds and work in a combination of methods and concepts in a technologically advanced world. They often integrate digital media, video, the internet and computers and use unconventional materials.

> View upcoming auctions

It couldn’t be more exciting!

Otto Piene (b. 1928), Rare Fire Painting, 1966

The Global Art Market

The international art world is bigger than ever. Powerhouse galleries participate in mega art fairs such as Art Basel Miami Beach, Art Dubai or FIAC, Paris, while small, start-up galleries present avant-garde works that continue to challenge conceptions of what art is.

Auctions are achieving higher prices than ever before. Increased globalization and a competition for the best works have created a dynamic and evolving market. It’s clear that the Contemporary art market has shifted into overdrive and it’s truly an exciting time to be involved.

> Subscribe to our newsletter

Modern and Contemporary art collector's items

Ink drawing by Max Weiler, Austria, 1970

How does one go from being an art enthusiast to a collector? There are many different options, as one might choose prints, drawings, sculptures, paintings, photographs or a little of each. The basic instinct to collect art can be channeled into a finely curated collection with guidance, education and a connoisseur’s eye.

> Shop now for more modern art

Offset colour print ‘Candle’, Gerhard Richter, Germany, 1988

If your motive is protection during turbulent economic conditions, investing in material assets such as art could provide a handsome return in the future. The wallets of young or beginning collectors might not afford the sums fetched at major auctions for the biggest names. However, works by less-known artists or editions by Modern and Contemporary masters are more attainable.

Famous artists in the Auctionata online shop

Top results from previous modern art auctions

Seif Wanly, Oil Painting, ‘Portrait of a Couple’, Egypt, 1978

Break records with Auctionata

At Auctionata, we utilize a number of strategies to successfully auction your artworks. Thanks to our patented technology that no other auction house can offer, we can reach collectors and art enthusiasts living in different time zones and distant continents, making our reach truly global. With just a few clicks of the mouse, one can bid from the comfort of the living room.

Alongside our exciting online auctions, we also regularly offer works of art from internationally renowned artists in our online shop. For young collectors and newcomers to collecting, we also have a variety of carefully curated artworks with low starting prices.

> View auction records

Highlights of our modern art auctions

G. Helnwein, “Untitled (Blue Madonna)”, 1998

Starting price €24,000.00
Sold for (incl. buyer’s premium) €68,090.00

M. Drissi, ‘Erotic Bar Scene’, late 20th C.

Starting price €4,000.00
Sold for (incl. buyer’s premium) €10,000.00

Gottfried Helnwein,‘The Song’, 1980

Starting price €24,000.00
Sold for (incl. buyer’s premium) €36,000.00