Styles & Periods

Styles & Periods

Funk Art

The exponents of Funk Art rejected the formalism and established traditions of the powerful art world of New York City in the 1960s. All Californians, these artists countered the beauty of the galleries and artwork of the East Coast, and instead created works that were often pornographic or distasteful. This deliberately rude movement was formalized when the University Art Museum in Berkeley held an exhibition titled “Funk” in 1967. Funk Art was a part of the Pop revolution, which brought art to a more everyday realm, either by the use of commercial materials or by subject. Assemblage, sculpture and environmental art came under the umbrella of Funk Art, and artists created deliberately poorly made, vulgar objects dealing with sex, religion, and other contentious topics. The most famous participant was Edward Kienholz, but others included Robert Arneson, Bruce Conner and Paul Thek.


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