Modernism and other Twentieth Century description
Under the guidance of the dealer and photographer, Alfred Stieglitz, a number of American painters took up the banner of Modernism as its influence filtered in from Europe around 1910. With the sensation of the 1913 Armory Show, Cubism, Post-Impressionsim, Synchromism, and a parade of other modernist subspecies hit the American consciousness and began an intense period of experimentation with flattened planes, abstract subjects, new media and fresh concepts. Though the term “Modernism” describes a loose grouping of new values and practices rather than a particular group of artists or a clearly-defined movement, the early period in America is generally described as ranging from the explosive Armory Show to World War II. This encompasses the Precisionist movement championed by Charles Sheeler, the symbolically-charged Southwestern paintings of Georgia O’Keeffe, and even those that remained committed to a sort of realism, like Thomas Hart Benton and Edward Hopper. Just as the tidal wave of Modernism brought the Ashcan School to an early end, the years following World War II brought a sharp and clear end to this eclectic and important period of American Art.