Artan Shalsi

1970 · Albania

Artist biography

Artan Shalsi is is an established, mid-career contemporary artist, who originates from Albania, like other celebrated artists such as Jennifer Sullivan, Monika Zisi, Maryam Hoseini, Adem Bajrami, and Genti Korini. Artan Shalsi was born in 1970.

About Artan Shalsi's works

Artan Shalsi is regarded as a main figure in the fields of Abstraction, Conceptual and Minimalism. Abstract art does not try to represent a faithful depiction of a visual reality, or of nature itself, but instead, with the use of colours, gestural elements and shapes tries to achieve its effect. The term can be applied to art that is primarily based on an object, or figure, where the main features have been simplified. Abstraction has been highly influential in modern art since the 1900s, with its origins grounded in Impressionism. One of the first, most influential movements related to abstraction is Cubism, with artists such as Pablo Picasso and Georges Braque, who through their work laid the foundations for a significant number of branches of abstract art.

Conceptual art is arguably not as clear and easily defined as other art movements, and can often provoke intense reactions in the viewers. By nature, Conceptualism puts an emphasis on the strategies and research that go into the creation, making the concept of an artwork its most significant feature, rather than the actual finished product. Although the movement emerged in the mid 1960s, simultaneously across Europe and America, its father Marcel Duchamp had paved the way back in 1917, with his controversial artwork Fontaine. Conceptual art denies the traditional mediums, and strives to place the artwork in the realm of ideas - rather than that of material objects. Some of the most critically acclaimed figures of Conceptualism include artists such as Sol LeWitt, Lawrence Weiner and Yoko Ono.

Towards the end of the 1950s, in New York city, young artists were starting to feel disenchanted in the stagnant state of art, which led to the emergence of the art movement known as Minimalism. Peaking in the 1960s, Minimalism sought to question all pre-existing conceptions one would have about art, and remove the gestural qualities that used to be deemed as essential in previous art movements. Rather than paintings, sculptures became characteristic of the movement, giving the artist a way to make use of their physical surroundings, thus offering the viewers a harmonious, truthful experience. The core essence of minimalism was to ground art in its own reality, stripping away any unessential, decorative aspect. Geometrical shapes became a key element of the genre, with an emphasis on creating illusions of spatial depth in the artworks, while remaining clean and simplified. Artists like Frank Stella, Dan Flavin or Donald Judd are critically acclaimed figures of Minimalism, and were deeply influenced by earlier European abstract movements.

Further Biographical Context for Artan Shalsi

Born in 1970, Artan Shalsi was largely influenced by the 1990s growing up. In the United Kingdom, a group of artists known as the YBAs, or Young British Artists, dominated the artistic culture of the decade. They were a loosely affiliated and diverse group, united generally by their age and nationality. Many of the members had attended the Royal College of Art and Goldsmiths in London, and were favoured by Charles Saatchi, the ‘super collector’ of art at the time. The most famous member of the group is arguably Damien Hirst, and other members included Chris Ofili, Tracey Emin, Marc Quinn, Gavin Turk, Sarah Lucas and Sam Taylor-Johnson (née Sam Taylor-Wood). Through their use of shock tactics and sensationalism, the YBAs garnered a divisive public image which was further fuelled by their use of throwaway materials, wild lifestyles and an attitude that was at the same time rebellious and enterprising. The group dominated the British art scene in the 1990s and their group show ‘Sensation’ is now viewed as legendary. The art world was influenced by a number of trends throughout the decade, the controversial, hyper-realistic sculptures of Maurizio Cattelan and the sensitive, conceptual work of Felix Gonzalez-Torres epitomised the cultural tone of the era.

Artan Shalsi

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