Marginalized Art

Art on the Periphery

Outsider. Folk. Street. Sacrilege. Treasonous. Unconventional. Vernacular. Naïve. Visionary. The terms we use to define art that does not fall into popular conceptions of “high art” or “fine art” are as numerous as they are fluid. Explore our collection of films and interactive features about the spectacular variety of art that lives outside the establishment.

The artist Jean-Michel Basquiat stands smiling in front of one of his canvases.

The Films

Explore Independent Lens films about unconventional art and artists from around the world who have challenged our presumptions about beauty. From censored art in Uzbekistan to Basquiat’s street art in Manhattan, from the world’s largest landfill to the mind of an artist with a brain injury, we’ll circle the globe by surfing art’s fringes. Explore the films >>

A detail from a painting entitled “The Bull” by Vladimir Lysenko depicts a wild looking beast staring out at the viewer with void-black eyes and one horn patterned enigmatically with Mondrian-like, colored rectangles.

Interactive Features

From street art to pre-punk beat literature; from Soviet censorship to the Third Reich’s exhibition of “degenerate art”; art from the underrepresented always seems to nudge culture to the edge of its comfort zone. Check out photo galleries, quizzes, videos, and other interactive goodies >>