Art for Self-Expression

     When an artist conveys information about his or her personality, feelings or world view – separate from a social cause, a sale or commission – art is fulfilling an expressive function. This type of art becomes a meeting ground between artist and viewer, through feelings of empathy and understanding of the artists personality.

     For example, Wassily Kandinsky, an artist leader in the Expressionist movement of early modern Germany, shared his feelings through his artwork. The painting, Composition VI expresses the artist’s inner state. Kandinsky often named his artwork after musical forms and wanted them to communicate like music. Kandinsky wrote: Color directly influence the soul, Color is the keyboard, the eyes are the hammers, the soul is the piano with many strings. The artist is the hand that plays, touching one key or another purposefully, to cause vibrations in the soul.


Frank, P., & Preble, D. (2011). Prebles’ artforms (11th ed.). Boston: Pearson/Prentice Halll.