Dots: Not just chic

Thanks to art shopping heavyweights like Frieze, dots firmly back on the contemporary art market front line this year.

Different size and color of dots are dominated the display in Frieze London 2019

From points to printed fabrics, dots is a classic pattern widely used in many occasions, as a mark or decoration. Also it is an important element of drawing and painting or any other forms of art. The leading figure of pushing dots to art trends must be the Japanese female artist Yayoi Kusama, dots spread over her paintings, sculptures, installations, and even her outfits. It has become a signature pattern of Yayoi Kusama.

Yayoi Kusama, The Passing Winter,2005. Photo: © James Deavin, Courtesy Victoria Miro Gallery, London © Yayoi Kusama

If you think Yayoi Kusama’s dots is too dense, well John Baldessari’s colorful dots would be easier to get started. He use colorful round spots to cover the faces on black and white photographs, at first these dots is used to block part of the image to draw something else, but then dots became the center of attention. These prints can match with any walls and any space, simple, classic, and chic.

John Baldessari, Fissures (Orange) and Ribbons (Orange, Blue): With Multiple Figures (Red, Green, Yellow), Plus Single Figure (Yellow) in Harness (Violet) and Balloons (Violet, Red, Yellow, Grey), 2004
© John Baldessari

For comic lovers, Roy Lichtenstein ‘s painting would be a good choice.

Roy Lichtenstein, Explosion,1965-6. Courtesy the Museum of Modern Art, New York © Roy Lichtenstein

And we never miss superstar artists. 

Damien Hirst, 11-Eicosenoil Acid, 2002. Courtesy Gagosian, New York,
© Damien Hirst

The trend of dots could actually track back to 1880s. Artists use small, distinct color of dots to paint, which is so-called ‘pointillism’. It was inspired by contemporary scientific theories of vision and light. The most famous work is A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte, a painting by Georges Seurat, describes a middle-class leisure scene and it is made up by thousands colored dots. 

Georges Seurat, A Sunday on La Grande Jatte,1884. Courtesy Art institute of Chicago

Art galleries make the red dots as a sign of order, but there are lots of potentials to play with it. 

John Waters, Congratulations, 2014. Courtesy of the artist and Sprüth Magers. © John Waters.

For those people on budget but still want to get in style, at least you can have these colorful round stickers at stationary shop, and styling your photos, paintings, furniture… everything you want. It’s not difficult to being arty.

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