Conceptual Art


The design of narrative environments, because it has strong conceptual, theoretical and critical components, may be able to learn from the strategies and techniques of conceptual art.

As an art movement, conceptual art arose in the mid-1960s, its influence remaining strong until the mid-1970s before waning. Even so, some artists continue to make conceptual art into the 21st century.

The term was first used in an article written by Sol LeWitt in 1967 in which he states that, “In conceptual art the idea or concept is the most important aspect of the work. When an artist uses a conceptual form of art, it means that all of the planning and decisions are made beforehand and the execution is a perfunctory affair.”

The prehistory of conceptual art can be traced back to Marcel Duchamp, who is often seen as an important forefather.

Conceptual artists were questioning the structures of the art world, but there was often also a strong socio-political dimension to much of the work they produced, reflecting wider dissatisfaction with society and government policies. This is very clear in the work of Joseph Beuys, for example.


LeWitt, S. (1967) ‘Paragraphs on Conceptual Art’, Artforum, 5 (10), 79-83

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