What Is Maximalist Art?

Maximalist Art

Maximalist Art has existed for a very long time now, even reaching centuries' worth of history behind it. The maximalist concept was actually created at first as a rebellious reaction against the ideas of minimalism. As a brief refresher, minimalism is actually a style that revolves around the “less is more” concept; minimalism enjoys the aesthetic of having as few elements as possible cluttering around a particular art space in order to bring out the most beauty in an artwork.

Obviously, maximalism is the exact opposite of what minimalism stands for. Maximalism in general is a concept that enjoys the ideas of excess and extravagance as its main pillars. While the style stretches around different kinds of media such as literature and music, maximalism in art takes the form of bold and eccentric elements splashed with vibrant colors that really show an “in your face” vibe.

To sum it up, maximalism rejects the “less is more” idea of minimalism and creates a “more is more” idea which completely tears down the walls of simplicity and perceived modesty. Joyelle McSweeney, a poet from the University of Notre Dame, also emphasized the eccentricity of maximalism, she said, “My notion of art is very maximalist and souped-up: I love spectacle, overload, magic materials, magic words, incantation and litany, incarnation and possession, spilling and wounds. Art as a sacred event.”

And that’s exactly what maximalism is. A wondrous spectacle of artistic elements clashing together in creative chaos that all comes together in the end to create a beauty that is not easily replicated and one that can be truly defined as a piece of art.

Emphasizing it once more, maximalism has been around for a long time in different forms. Alessandra Wood, an executive of the California-based interior design company Modsy, remarked, “Wealthy people throughout history have practiced forms of maximalism as ways to showcase their riches.” And we still see this in action even in modern times. Many rich people are used to flaunting their wealth in the most bizarre of ways. Evidently, this is an example of maximalism and the interest it generates.

It just goes to show that it is not an exaggeration to claim that maximalism as an art form is closely entwined with the human desire for excess in life. And perhaps this is one of the many reasons why maximalism is widely accepted around the world among artists from all walks of life.

Gao Minglu, a Chinese contemporary art scholar, described the maximalism of visual art in a deeper way, he commented on the emphasis on “the spiritual experience of the artist in the process of creation as a self-contemplation outside and beyond the artwork itself.”

Examples of maximalist artworks that have picked up in popularity include Mao’s Silhouette by You Youhan created in the year 2000, and the Less is a Bore exhibit organized by The Boston Institute of Contemporary Art which celebrated the most striking elements of most maximalist pieces such as disorienting patterns and a wild choice of colors.

Make sure you are on my VIP Mailing list to find out about my pop art maximalist art exhibitions. 

Older Post Newer Post

We're sorry, but your access to our site is currently restricted. If you believe this is an error, please contact support for assistance. Thank you for your understanding.