How Canvas Art Came Into Being

If you have been to fairs, you surely have seen painters with a large canvas on the sidewalks waiting to paint portraits. Canvas art is one of the best ways to display your artistic talent. It can be of various types. There is a vast array of artwork that is very well captured on canvas as canvas art.Canvas art can be oil paintings – scenic beauty of nature, or it can be photo canvas prints. The main attractive feature of canvas art is the material of the canvas. The fabric of canvas art exudes elegance. They have a certain regal quality which has been attributed to the popularity of canvas art.Canvas art is fairly new to the art business. From ancient times, it has been wooden panels that were chosen by the artists.

The Italian Renaissance has democratised the use of canvas as a medium. Thus it gave birth to the tradition of canvas art. Common people also started to create canvas art because it was easier to use than frescoes or wooden panels. In moist weather, wooden panels or frescoes messed up the art. But canvas art survived completely unscathed. There was the availability of canvas because of their profession as sailors. So canvas art started to spread beyond the borders of Italy.

Canvas allowed larger formats, may it be a portrait or scenery. Canvas art was also much easier to carry through. Their easy portability and accessibility helped in their commonization. From Italy, Spanish people also started to use canvas and create canvas art. It spread through Northern Europe in no time. Canvas art became the dominant of all art forms. Canvas art even surpassed the boundaries of oil painting. It expanded to acrylic paint and even embroidery pieces. Photographers also used canvas like painters did, so that their pieces have a certain professional outlook.

Historically canvas art was created in canvases made from tightly woven hemp. If we search the etymological root of the term canvas, we can see that it comes from a Latin word, Cannabis. Even though the material for canvas art was made with hemp and linen at first, now they started to use cotton as the main source. Cotton was the best choice as it was less prone to cracking. As cubism questioned perspectival illusionism, another quality of canvas came into existence. They coopted the physical shape and texture of the canvas they are working on and incorporated it into the canvas art itself. A prime example would be the slashed surface painting by Lucio Fontana.

Canvas art in today’s world:

Digital art printed on canvas is becoming very popular now. As any piece on canvas can be called canvas art, it has a broad horizon. Giclée or fine art inkjet printing has provided the photographers with such colour and quality that the world has never seen before. Canvas art can also be created from any kind of painting. It is also a very easy process. You can even display your family photographs or children’s drawings as canvas art now!

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