Pop Art of the 1960's

Essay by mlissysmomHigh School, 11th gradeA-, May 2008

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Pop Art of the 1960'sWhat started as a rebellious art form against the conservative 1950's, the Pop Art movement of the 1960's set the stage for the social reform of an entire decade. A strong sense of conservatism embraced the society of the 1950's. Conservatism, defined as "an unwillingness or slowness to accept change or new ideas," 1 manifested itself in many facets of the 1950's society. Along this conservative line, art displayed itself as very traditional and abstract. Appropriately named Abstract Expressionism, the artists of this genre relied on the viewer to interpret its significance or expression of their artwork with regard to his or her emotions. This conservatism was further typified in male fashion of the fifties as it included gray flannel suits and plaid button-down shirts. Women wore dresses with tight waistlines and high heeled shoes. To solidify the strong sense of family that partnered this conservatism, Disneyland found its way into American society as families enjoyed the wholesome pastime of playing together.

The weekly airing of television shows such as "The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet", "I Love Lucy" and "Lassie" further demonstrated this conservatism.

In contrast to the traditionalism of the fifties, the 1960's encountered a mindset of change and innovativeness unlike any other decade of the twentieth century. 2 The transformations and reforms of this decade affected, education, values, lifestyles, laws, entertainment, and particularly, art. Deemed too vague and ambiguous, Abstract Expressionism of the previous decade stirred conflict in the art world. Artists rebelled against the former art form. The art reformers of this period no longer depended on the viewer to interpret or infer meaning from art. "Art," according to these dissenters, "needed to reflect the viewer." 3 As the 1960's generation became ripe for reform, these contemporary and rebellious artists of this...