Postmodernism is a term used from about 1970 to describe changes seen to take place in Western society and culture from the 1960s onwards

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These changes arose from anti-authoritarian challenges to the prevailing orthodoxies across the board. In art, postmodernism was specifically a reaction against modernism.

Some outstanding characteristics of postmodernism are that it collapses the distinction between high culture and mass or popular culture; that it tends to get rid of the boundary between art and everyday life; and that it refuses to recognise the authority of any single style or definition of what art should be. Resultantly, postmodern art is characterised by the self-conscious use of earlier styles and conventions, and a mixing of different artistic styles and media.

Postmodernism may be said to begin with pop art and to embrace much of what followed including conceptual art, neo-expressionism, feminist art, and the Young British Artists of the 1990s.