What the dictionary says:
Thinking characterized by the ability to use concepts and to make and understand generalizations, such as of the properties or pattern shared by a variety of specific items or events.
Hmm ...what does this mean to an artist?
Art is a purely visual medium in that you have to see it to understand it, maybe understand is too open, you have to see it and react to or form your own opinion about it. Whether you love it or you hate it or whether it simply does nothing for you at all.
Abstract art should be a distillation of something bigger, more profound. The artist starts off with the 'bigger picture' in mind and then takes it down to it's essence. omitting all the extraneous things that don't add anything of great import - the frills - but leaving in the bells and maybe one or two whistles!
The final piece takes on a life of it's own, it's not important to know where the artist started, but to understand where they arrived.