Minimalism (1970s-Today)

Minimalism is an artistic movement that spreaded in the 20th century, it is possible to find it in each art and design field.

Plage Colección My Wall
A minimalist living room.

Image source: by Plage Vinilos y Decoración

Minimalist Architecture

The origins of minimalist architecture can be traced back to the Cubist design movements De Stijl and Bauhaus The famous architect Ludwig Mies van der Rohe said: “Less is more”

maestro luis barragán
luis barragán

image source: by nicolas.boullosa

Luis Ramiro Barragán Morfín changed modern architecture with his employement of bright colors recalling traditional architecture of Mexico in projects as his Casa Barragán, the Chapel of the Capuchinas and the Torres de Satélite. Luis Barragán House and Studio, also known as Casa Luis Barragán, was built in 1947-1948 and it is located in a working class suburb of Mexico City. It represents an outstanding example of the architect’s creative work in the post-Second World War period.

Luis Barragan - Casa Luis Barragan 張基義老師拍攝 034.jpg
Barragan House, Mexico City, Mexico, 1948

image source: by 準建築人手札網站 Forgemind ArchiMedia

The concrete building of Casa Barragàn features a ground floor and two upper levels, as well as a little private garden. The architect’s fusion of modern design with traditional Mexican vernacular themes has been greatly influential, especially in the  design of gardens.

Influences Coming from far Away

Tadao Ando is a self-taught artist from Osaka, Japan. Growing during Japan recovering from the war, Tadao Ando was interested in architecture since he was fifteen after buying a book of Le Corbusier drawings. The features of his work include large expanses of minimalist architectural concrete walls fused with wooden or stone floors and huge windows. Active natural elements, played a key role in his style.

File:Azuma house.JPG
Row House (Azuma House), Sumiyoshi, Osaka, in Japan, 1976

image source: by Oiuysdfg

His Row House in Sumiyoshi is an excellent example of his characteristic style. It is conceived with three equal rectangular volumes. The house is known for the contrast between appearance and spatial organization which allows to make evident the richness of the space within the geometry.

Minimalist Sculpture

Minimal objects were simple with geometric bodies such as cubes. Minimalist sculptures were focused on the use of the space. The artwork was carefully designed to give relevance to the architecture. Minimalist artist employ industrial materials, prefabricated or mass-produced.

Donald Judd was an American Art Critic and Sculptor. His rejection of both traditional art led him to conceiving art with the idea of the object as it exists in what surrounds it. Judd’s goal was to make objects that could lay on their own base as part of an expanded field, not going beyond their own physical presence. His work is often considered literalist.

Donald Judd, Ohne Titel (Stack), 1968-69
Donald Judd, Ohne Titel (Stack), 1968-69

Image source: by oliworx

The Way to Neo Minimalism

Neo-minimalism is an amorphous art movement that features the use of domestic objects as sculptural elements. It is sometimes called “New Abstraction”. Contemporary artists who are associated with the word, include David Burdeny, Catharine Burgess, Marjan Eggermont and Paul Kuhn.

Richard Serra's Tilted Spheres in Terminal 1 Pier F at Toronto's YYZ airport
Richard Serra’s Tilted Spheres in Terminal 1 Pier F at Toronto’s YYZ airport.

Image source: by Ken Mist


The term “Post-Minimalism” was employed in reference to a range of art sensibilities that emerged in the wake of Minimalism in the late 1960s. Some artists of this movement sought to extend the interest of Minimalism in designing art objects that do not have the representational functions of traditional sculptures, each work has a strong material presence.

Untitled (Undated) - Ellsworth Kelly (1923 - 2015)
by Ellsworth Kelly(American painter, sculptor, and printmaker associated with hard-edge painting, Color Field painting and minimalism.)

Image source: by pedrosimoes7

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