Different art styles developed in the span of a century. Many artists share the same philosophy and style which resulted in the creation of various Art Movements. The Art Movement is a style in art shared by artists with a common philosophy or goal.

Let us learn about the basic art movements so that we can appreciate and understand the intention of each painting we see.


You will notice that paintings of this style closely resembles the subject matter. The colors used are very realistic, and the lines and shapes are similar in real life. Portraits and classic landscape paintings are commonly done using this style.

Famous artists from this movement are Rembrandt van Rijn, Johannes Vermeer, Peter Paul Rubens, Edouard Manet, and Diego Velazquez.


As the name implies, paintings of this style are the personal impression of the artist on the subject matter. The focus of this style is not the details but the effect of light on the subject.

This painting style has a lot of texture. The paint used is usually thick and commonly applied in layers with quick and short brush strokes. In effect, the colors are applied on top of each other instead of being mixed before application.

Famous artists who used this movement are Claude Monet, Paul Cezanne, Edgar Degas, Vincent Van Gogh and Pierre-Auguste Renoir.


Painting of this style is full of emotions from the artist. This painting style uses Bold colors, sharp lines, and shapes. The figure and form of the subject in a painting like this is recognizable, but it may not appear as it is in real life.

The use of bold colors and lines showcases the emotion that the artist wants to express. This open expression from the artist also evokes the emotion of the person viewing the painting.

Famous artist in this art movement are Henri Matisse, Pablo Picasso, Edvard Munch, El Greco


One notable feature in surrealist art is its dreamlike nature. You can recognize the form of the subject, but it is presented in distorted image and unusual arrangements.

Famous artist who used this style are Salvador Dali, Joan Miro, Max Ernst, M. C. Escher, and Paul Delvaux


The painting of this style is consist of elements of reality but expressed in an abstract sense. The method focuses on the essence of the subject matter and not how it appears in the real world.

Famous artists who used this style are Pablo Picasso, Joan Miro, Wassily Kandinsky, Kasimir Malevich and Roberto Matta.


As opposed to abstraction, a painting of this style does not contain an identifiable figure. It does not depict any physical object. It focuses on expressing emotion, scene, and event.

Famous artists in this movement are Jackson Pollock, Barnett Newman, Franz Kline, Mark Rothko and Theo Van Doesburg.

These art movements are just a few of the styles that developed throughout the century. There is a whole lot more to discover. It will be great to know more about each movement because it offers a unique insight into the art and the artist.