Purism

In his essay, Purism and L'Esprit Nouveau, David Batchelor characterizes the Purist movement as "a serious, thoughtful and ambitious project". Purism was Modern Art movement that was founded in France during the 1920's. It was a movement that was spearheaded by artists Charles-Edouard Jeanneret and Amédée Ozenfant in their publication entitled L'Espirit Nouveau. In general, the Purists considered logic, order, and control to be some of the most valuable qualities to exist in works of art. The emphasis in Purism was most heavily placed in " rationality, clarity of conception, and precision of execution". The Purists were critical, on the other hand, of the "capricious" qualities of art, and emphasized that art should not merely aim to "please the senses".Which basically meant that any excess of decoration was considered to compromise the purity of the artwork.
Due to the mostly schematic qualities of Purist artwork, according to Batchelor, it was often compared to the Cubist movement. While Jeanneret and Ozenfant considered Purism to have, in fact, evolved from Cubism, they also believed it had transcended beyond the principles of Cubism into something more ambitious. Their belief was based on the idea that Cubist collages and paintings were often somewhat ambiguous, and were unified by connecting and overlapping shapes. This resulted in a sometimes diagram-like organization. While the Purists maintained a schematic quality similar to the Cubists, in contrast they kept the objects on the canvas separated and placed in a delegated space as opposed to connected and overlapping. This focus on process aligns Purism with the larger concepts of modernism. The purists also saw the industrialization of the modernist movement as a positive sign of uniformity and mass productive design, which required any inessential ornamentation to be eliminated from the design, therefo…

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