Modern vs Contemporary, are they the same style? According to About.Com, the differences are many. A Modern space tends to follow a strict style format while Contemporary has much variation in its interiors. Modern in its true form is rarely viewed as stark or cold, while some Contemporary interiors celebrate a bold starkness. In Modern decorating, colors lean toward naturals or neutrals, but Contemporary has no problems swinging from one extreme to the other on the color scale. Modern design favors strong lines, while the Contemporary Style loves curves.