A minimalist art collection is a website. I have a few pieces of contemporary art, and I’m fascinated by the process of buying art. In this post, I’ll try to explain why I think the two processes are similar.
A minimalist art collection is a collection that serves its purpose – to be beautiful and interesting – with as little design effort as possible. A minimalist website is a website that serves its purpose – to deliver value to the user – with as little code as possible.
The more work you invest in design and code, the less you have available for delivering your real product, which in both cases is beautiful, meaningful content.
So, how do you build a minimalist art collection? Here are some principles:
The advantage of minimalism is that it’s free. The disadvantage is that it’s hard. To design a beautiful collection, you have to learn the rhythm of your medium. You have to know what works and what doesn’t, and why. You have to know where the boundaries are. And you don’t get that knowledge without doing some ugly work, without going beyond your comfort zone, without getting your hands dirty.
____A few years ago, I designed a site where every page was different. It was the ugliest site I’d ever seen. But it was also the most fun I’d ever had designing something. I learned more about web design in three months than I had in all my previous years as a designer. Most of the lessons were bad ones: how not to design a site. But then you learn those by doing ugly work for yourself; you don’t learn them by studying beautiful designs made by other people. If you want to be good at minimalism, you need to make mistakes — lots of them — and accept that fact from the outset.
I have a new word for you that I think will be useful: Minimalist Art.
Minimalist Art refers to any painting, drawing or sculpture with simple and uncluttered lines, often abstract or non-representational in style.
I was reading an article in the New York Times about how minimalism is making a comeback on the art scene. And now more than ever, minimalism is being adopted by commercial companies as a key design principle for their branding and marketing campaigns.
The reason why minimalism is so popular is because it is clean and simple and bold, just like minimalist websites. In fact, there are many parallels between the creation of minimalist art and the creation of minimalist websites.
Minimalist websites are stripped down to the bare essentials; they use simple typography, bold colors, clear layout and original images to convey their message. So too with minimalist art; it’s stripped down to its essential parts – usually just black lines on white or colored background – to convey a powerful message in one single image.
I’m pretty obsessive about collecting minimalist art. I’ve been doing it since college and have amassed quite a collection. But, like almost everyone else in the world, I never really thought of it as being anything but decoration.
The funny thing is, I’ve been thinking about minimalist design a lot recently. And what I realized was that minimalist art and minimal design are the same thing!
In this first post, I want to look at minimalism in art. Minimalism is, simply put, the idea that the most effective form of art is the most simple. It has a long history, and its influence can be seen today in design and architecture.
It’s an interesting point of view; and like most interesting points of view, it’s not as cut-and-dried as it might first appear.
The original title of this post was “Minimalist Art: The New Black,” but the more I thought about it, the more I realized that was a bad analogy. For one thing, minimalism as a movement never really went away. It’s just that today, it’s hip and happening again. Just like in the 80s.
The real parallel is between minimalist art and flat design, which is why this post has been retitled to “Minimalist Art: The New Web Design.”
I love minimalism both as an aesthetic and as a mindset. Minimalism is not just the absence of clutter; it’s a design philosophy that aims to cut out anything that isn’t essential to what you’re trying to communicate. It’s generally characterized by clean, simple shapes and a limited color palette.
It’s also characterized by low contrast and high readability in typefaces, which is why I love it so much for web design.
I see minimalism in art, design and architecture as a philosophy that is based on the idea that less is more. Minimalism is all about stripping down an idea or a piece of work to its core elements. The concept of minimalism dictates that there should only be what is necessary to express an idea.
Telling a story or delivering a message with minimalism is all about telling the story or delivering the message with the most effective way possible. You want to get your point across in just a few sentences, with little distraction.
Minimalist design works on this same principle of stripping away anything extra so that what you have left is more pure, more direct and hopefully more beautiful.