Minimalism in the visual arts is a movement that began in the late 1960s and early 1970s. It can be understood as a reaction against the subjectivity of Abstract Expressionism, which had been dominant in American art during the 1940s and 1950s. Minimalist artists produced works characterized by simple, geometrical forms that deliberately lack expressive qualities and do not refer to anything beyond their literal presence (as painter Frank Stella put it, “what you see is what you see”). Prominent artists associated with Minimalism include Donald Judd, Carl André, Agnes Martin, Sol LeWitt and Dan Flavin.
Sol LeWitt. Eight Unit Cube (No. 7402). Painted aluminum. 1976. Institute of Contemporary Art, Miami. Photo: Zachary Balber.