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Art History
09/22/2010

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Term
Analogous color
Definition
Colors that lie next to one another on the color wheel and share qualities of hue as a result of the mixture of adjacent hues, harmonious hues. Families of analogous colors include the warm colors (red, orange and yellow) and the cool colors (green, blue and violet). Analogous colors are sometimes referred to as adjacent colors.
Term
Atmospheric perspective
Definition
An illusion of depth created through grades of texture and brightness, color saturation, and warm and cool colors. An indistinct or jazy effect produced by distance and the illusion of distance in visual art.
Term
Biomorphic shape
Definition
A nonrepresentational form or pattern that resembles a living organism in shape or appearance. Biomorphic shapes seem to ebb and flow, expand and contract, or metamorphose as directed by some inner life force.
Term
Chiaroscuro
Definition
concerns the rendering of forms through a balanced contrast between light and dark areas. Chiaroscuro is the gradual shifting from light to dark through a successive graduation of tones across a curved surface. By use of many graduations of value, artists can give objects portrayed on a flat surface a rounded, three-dimensional appearance. The technique that was introduced during the Renaissance is effective in creating an illusion of depth and space around the principal figures in a composition. Leonardo da Vinci and Rembrandt were painters who excelled in the use of this technique.
Term
Complementary color
Definition
One of a specific pair of colors that most enhance, or exaggerate, one another by virtue of their simultaneous contrast. Each pair of complementary colors contains one primary color plus the secondary color made by mixing the other two primaries. Because the compliments do not share characteristics of hue and are as unlike as possible, the eye readily tells them apart. When complementary colors are placed next to one another, the effects are often jarring. Complementary colors are opposite each other on the color wheel. If complementary colors are mixed, they dissolve into neutral gray.
Term
Contour line
Definition
A perceived line that marks the edge of a figure as it curves back into space. Contour lines are created by the edges of things. Contour lines are lines that surround and define the edges of a subject, giving it shape and volume
Term
Hue
Definition
Color; the distinctive characteristics of a color that enable us to label it and to assign it a place in the visible spectrum. The wavelength of light determines its color. Pure hues have the greatest intensity, or brightness. Artists produce shades of a given hue by adding black, and tints by adding white.
Term
Implied line
Definition
A line that is completed by the viewer; a discontinuous line that the viewer perceives as being continuous; a line suggested by a series of points or dots or by the nearby end-points of series of lines; or a line evoked by the movements and glances of the figures in a composition. An implied line can be a discontinuous line that the viewer reads as continuous because of the overall context of the image.
Term
Line
Definition
A line is an identifiable path of a point moving in space. It can vary in width, direction and length. It serves as a basic building block around which an art form is constructed. In art, a line is more commonly defined as a moving dot. Lines may be perceived as delicate, tentative, elegant, assertive, forceful or even brutal. Artists use line to outline shapes, to evoke forms and movement, to imply solid mass, or for its own sake. In groupings, lines can create shadows and even visual illusions. A line can be used to outline and shape, create depth and texture and to suggest direction and movement.
Term
Linear perspective
Definition
A system of organizing space in two-dimensional media in which lines that are in reality parallel and horizontal are represented as converging diagonals. The method is based on foreshortening, in which the space between the lines grows smaller until it disappears, just as objects appear to grow smaller as they become more distant.
Term
Local color
Definition
The hue of an object created by the colors its surface reflects under normal lighting conditions. Color that is natural rather than symbolic for the depicted objects. The true color of an object or a surface as seen in typical daylight, rather than its color as seen through atmosphere or interpreted by the taste or imagination of the artist.
Term
Mass
Definition
In painting, large areas of one form or color. It creates the illusion of possessing volume, having weight, and occupying three-dimensional space; in three-dimensional art, the mass of an object refers to its bulk.
Term
Modeling
Definition
In two-dimensional works of art, the creation of the illusion of depth through the use of light and shade. In sculpture, the process of shaping a pliable material, such as clay or wax, into a three-dimensional form. Modeling can be achieved through stippling, hatching or cross hatching.
Term
Negative shape
Definition
Space that is empty or filled with imagery that is secondary to the main objects or figures depicted in the composition.
Term
Optical color
Definition
The perception of the color of an object, which may vary markedly according to atmospheric conditions.
Term
Outline
Definition
A line drawn by pencil, pen, graver, or the like, by which the boundary of a figure is indicated. It defines a shape or form as separate from its surrounding space.
Term
Overlapping
Definition
Spatial relationships are achieved by placing one object in front of another. The object closest to the viewer blocks out the view of any part of any other object located behind it (or, where the two objects overlap, the one in back is obscured). Artists use overlapping to create the illusion of depth.
Term
Positive shape
Definition
The spatial form defined by the objects or figures represented in works of art.
Term
Shape
Definition
An area within a composition that has boundaries that separate it from its surroundings; shapes make these areas distinct. Shapes are formed when intersecting or connected lines enclose space. Shape can also be communicated through patches of color or texture. Shapes that are found in geometric figures are called geometric shapes. Geometric shapes can be rectilinear when straight lines intersect to from them and curvilinear when curving lines intersect to form them or when they circle back to join themselves. Shapes that resemble organisms found in nature are are called organic shapes.
Term
Tenebrism
Definition
A style of painting in which the artist goes rapidly from highlighting to deep shadow, using very little modeling.
Term
Tint
Definition
The lightness of a color as determined by the extent of its mixture with white.
Term
Texture
Definition
The surface character of materials as experienced by the sense of touch. Impasto is a texture applied to a two-dimensional surface by a thick buildup of paint. In three-dimensional media the materials themselves have definable textures or actual texture. Visual texture is the simulated texture in a work of art that is achieves by the artist’s use of line, color and other elements to create the illusion of various textures in flat drawings and paintings.
Term
Trompe l’oeil
Definition
A French term meaning "deception of the eye." A painting or other art form that creates such a realistic image that the viewer may wonder whether it is real or an illusion. .
Term
Shade
Definition
The degree of darkness of a color determined by the extent of its mixture with black.
Term
Value
Definition
The lightness or darkness of a color. Value is determined by the amount of light reflected by the surface; the greater the amount of light reflected, the lighter the surface. More light is reflected by a white surface than by a gray surface.
Term
Actual balance
Definition
is the equal distribution of weight. It is a state of stability in an object that has weight. If you were to dissect a composition in half on its vertical axis both halves would correspond to one another in size, shape and placement. Sometimes, they are very much like a mirror image of one another. Also means that the piece of art is literally balanced. It can stand upright on its own.
Term
Approximate symmetry
Definition
the whole of the work has a symmetrical feeling, but slight variations provide more visual interest than would a mirror image. Approximate symmetry provides variety within the overall unified work.
Term
Asymmetrical balance
Definition
Balance in which the right and left sides of a composition contain different shapes, colors, textures, or other elements and yet are arranged or weighted so that the overall impression is one of balance. When an asymmetrical design is disturbingly off balance, the result is disharmony
Term
Canon of scale
Definition
A set of rules governing the proportions of the human body or common objects as they are to be rendered by artists. Polykleitos is credited with the derivation of a canon or proportions – a set of rules about body parts and their dimensions relative to one another that became the standard for creating the ideal figure. Ideally, the head is one-eighth of the total height of the body and the width from shoulder to shoulder should not exceed one-fourth of the body’s height.
Term
Conceptual unity
Definition
Unity in a work that is achieved through the relationship between the meaning and function of the images. Conceptual unity uses similarity of ideas, rather than visual similarities to hold a design together.
Term
Content
Definition
All that is contained in a work of art
Term
Contrapposto
Definition
A position in which a figure is obliquely balanced around a central vertical axis. The position of a human figure in painting or sculpture in which the hips and legs are turned in a different direction from that of the shoulders and head; the twisting of a figure on its own vertical axis. Especially a way of sculpting a human figure in a natural pose with the weight of one leg, the shoulder, and hips counterbalancing each other. Thus it is sometimes called "weight shift." This technique was developed late in the ancient Greek period.
Term
Form
Definition
The totality of what the viewer sees in a work of art; a product of the composition of visual elements. In its widest sense, total structure; a synthesis of all the visible aspects of that structure and of the manner in which they are united to create its distinctive character. The form of a work is what enables us to perceive it. It refers to all the visual elements of a work of art. Form also refers to an element of art that is three-dimensional (height, width, and depth) and encloses volume. For example, a triangle, which is two-dimensional, is a shape, but a pyramid, which is three-dimensional, is a form. Cubes, spheres, ovoids, pyramids, cone, and cylinders are examples of various forms. Also, all of the elements of a work of art independent of their meaning. Formal elements are primary features which are not a matter of semantic significance — including color, dimensions, line, mass, medium, scale, shape, space, texture, value; and the principles of design under which they are placed — including balance, contrast, dominance, harmony, movement, proportion, proximity, rhythm, similarity, unity, and variety. Form is the physical manifestation or tangible evidence of the artist idea. It includes the materials used, the process, and the artistic stylization or design. Literally, form refers to "how" the artist manifested his idea.
Term
Formal symmetry
Definition
Also known as bilateral symmetry, everything in a composition to either side of an actual or imaginary lines is the same. The regularity and predictability of symmetry cannot help but conjure a sense of peace, calm, comfort and order.
Term
Golden Mean
Definition
The principle that a small part of a work should relate to a larger part of the work in proportion to the manner in which the larger part relates to the whole. A proportional relation (ratio) obtained by dividing a line so that the shorter part is to the longer part as the longer part is to the whole. Another way to describe this
Term
Harmony
Definition
Agreement; accord. A union or blend of aesthetically compatible components. A composition is harmonious when the interrelationships between its parts fulfill aesthetic requisites or are mutually beneficial. As a principle of design, harmony refers to a way of combining elements of art to accent their similarities and bind the picture parts into a whole. It is often achieved through the use of repetition and simplicity. Excessive harmony leads to monotony, boredom. Relieving this may be elements of contrast; even of dissonance.
Term
Hierarchical scaling
Definition
The use of relative size to indicate the comparative importance of the depicted objects or people. This method has been used for literally thousands of years. In ancient Egyptian art, members of royalty and nobility are sized consistently larger than the underlings surrounding them, making very clear their social positions.
Term
Horizontal balance
Definition
Balance in which the elements on the left and right sides of the composition seem to be about equal in number or visual emphasis. The Capitol Building in Washington, DC is an example of horizontal balance.
Term
Repetition
Definition
Closely related to harmony, a principle of design, this term refers to a way of combining elements of art so that the same elements are used over and over again. Thus, a certain color or shape might be used several times in the same picture. Repetition also can contribute to movement and rhythm in a work of art. Repeating a specific element or motif creates unity, such as line, shape, or form, but, varying its size, width, or decorative quality creates variety.
Term
Rhythm
Definition
The orderly repetition or progression of the visual elements in a work of ark. A visual tempo or beat. The principle of design that refers to a regular repetition of elements of art to produce the look and feel of movement. It is often achieved through the careful placement of repeated components which invite the viewer's eye to jump rapidly or glide smoothly from one to the next. Each artist, every period, every culture produces a characteristic sort of rhythm. Recognizing a work's rhythmical peculiarities often aids in identify the culture or time in which it was produced, if not the individual artist who produced it.
Term
Radial balance
Definition
Balance in which the design elements radiate from a center point. Radial or rotational balance is any type of balance based on a circle with its design extending from or focused upon its center. A star, the iris around each pupil of your eyes, a wheel with spokes, and a daisy (among many flowers and other plant forms) are examples of radial balance. Radial balance is frequently a major principle of design in art forms such as ceramics, jewelry, basketry, stained glass and other crafts.
Term
Spiral
Definition
The spiral shows the attributes of the Golden Mean as it occurs in nature. The nautilus shell exhibits this ratio in its spiral shape and proportions. A spiral can be created by extending the golden rectangle in an enlarging, circular manner and connecting the corners of the squares with a curve.
Term
Style
Definition
A characteristic manner or mode of artistic expression or design. An artist's characteristic manner of expression. Also, works of art by different artists may have certain features in common. Such works are said to have a group style. Some examples of group styles are art nouveau, expressionism, fauvism, impressionism, rococo, romanticism, social realism, and surrealism.
Term
Variety
Definition
A principle of design that refers to a way of combining elements of art in involved ways to achieve intricate and complex relationships. Variety is often obtained through the use of diversity and change by artists who wish to increase the visual interest of their work. An artwork which makes use of many different hues, values, lines, textures, and shapes would reflect the artist's desire for variety. Unity is the principle which is its variety's opposite; but when there is too little variety, the result is monotony.
Term
Vertical balance
Definition
Balance in which the elements in the top and bottom of the composition are in balance.
Term
Visual balance
Definition
The extent to which the viewer's attention is drawn to a shape, form, color, or other feature of an artwork. It is achieved by the proper use of color and placement in sequence of related sizes of materials in conjunction with structural balance. Visual balance is balance you see with your eyes. Visual balance is a principle of design whereby the elements of design are arranged to create an effect of stability. The positioning of the elements according to their size, color, texture and details creates visual balance, and that balance can be symmetrical or asymmetrical.
Term
Visual unity
Definition
The unity in a work of art as created by use of visual elements. A way to achieve unity in a composition that does not rely on the consistency or repetition of the elements of art. An artist relys on the discordant punctuations and focus on the relationships between the meaning and functions of the images. Unity is the feeling that everything in the work of art works together and looks like it fits. Repetition of shape and color can make an artwork unified.
Term
Weight shift
Definition
The situating of the human figure so that the legs and hips are turned in one direction and the chest and arms in another. This shifting of weight results in a diagonal balancing of tension and relaxation. Classical Greek artist Polykleitos was perhaps the first artist to observe the body’s shifting of weight in order to achieve balance and to develop a set of rules to apply this observation to representations of the figure. He observed that when the body is at rest, one leg bears the weight of the body and the other is relaxed. In order for the body to balance itself, the upper torso shifts, as if corresponding to an S curve, so that the arm opposite the tensed leg is tensed, and the one opposite the relaxed leg is relaxed. Tension and tension and relaxation and relaxation are read diagonally across the body.
Term
Nonobjective
Definition
Art that does not portray figures or objects; art without real models or subject matter. Artworks having no recognizable subject matter (not recognizable as such things as houses, trees, people, etc.) Also known as non-representational art. Non-objective art does not contain a recognizable subject. Rather, the artist manipulates the elements of art (color, shape, line, form, space, value, texture) by using the principles of design (balance, repetition, unity, rhythm, proportion, harmony, variety, emphasis, movement). The word "non-objective" can be broken down, literally, into the words "no object." When one looks at a non-objective piece of artwork, they will see various arrangements of lines, shapes, colors, etc. Sometimes these compositions make a pattern or design. Many people believe that non-objective art is not "real art," but non-objective artwork can be found in the rugs we buy for our homes, the prints on our clothing, and the covers of notebooks, folders, and CD's. Jackson Pollack and Piet Mondrion were two artists with non-objective styles.
Term
Representational
Definition
Often used synonymously with figurative art it is defined as art that portrays, however altered or distorted, things perceived in the visible world. Art that present natural objects in recognizable form. Representational art consists of pictures that depict some recognizable thing or scene. It includes portraits, still lifes, and landscapes. It is includes both realist art, which attempts to reproduce the actual appearance of the things depicted, or an idealization thereof, and expressionist art, which depicts recognizable things, but in a way that incorporates an emotional reaction to them, without attempting literal reproduction of their appearance. Leonardo's "Mona Lisa" and Munch's "The Scream" are both representational, the one realistic, the other expressionistic. Representational art contrasts with abstract art.
Term
Additive and subtractive
Definition
In sculpture, additive process is the adding, building up or assembling of materials, as in modeling and constructing. It is the Sculptural form produced by combining or building up material from a core or armature. Modeling in clay and welding steel are additive processes. Subtractive process is the removal of material as in carving.
Term
Arch
Definition
A curved or pointed structure consisting of wedge-shaped blocks that span an open space and support the weight of material above by transferring the load outward and downward over two vertical supports, or piers. A structure with a curved, pointed, or squared upper edge to an opening, and supporting the weight above it. It is usually a masonry construction, used as a doorway, window, or a portal, although freestanding monumental arches have been built simply for symbolic purposes. A masonry arch has a keystone surmounting and holding in place several wedge-shaped blocks, called voussoirs, that transmit the downward pressure laterally. A diaphragm arch is a transverse, wall-bearing arch that divides a vault or a ceiling into compartments, providing a kind of fire-break. Arches may take different shapes, as in the pointed Gothic arch, the rounded Roman or Romanesque arch, or the stilted Islamic arch, but all require support from other arches or buttresses
Term
Aperture
Definition
An opening. In photography, the circular hole in the front of the camera lens which controls the amount of light allowed to pass on to the film from the lens. On all but very inexpensive cameras the size of the aperture is variable. The degree of variability is indicated by "f" numbers (f/stop). The smaller the F-stop number (or f/value), the larger the lens opening (aperture).
Term
Assemblages
Definition
a work of art that consists of three-dimensional objects assembled to create an image. It is a form of constructed sculpture in which pre-existing, or found objects, recognizable in form, are integrated by the sculptor into novel combinations that take on a life and meaning of their own. The best known assemblage is Picassio’s Bull’s head. It consists of a seat and handlebars of an old bicycle.
Term
Bas-relief
Definition
A French term meaning "low-raised work." Bas-relief is a form of sculpture in which a solid piece of material is carved so that objects project from a background, almost as though they are trapped in the stone, metal, wood, or other materials used to make the bas-relief. This carving technique is quite ancient, and it has been used independently in many cultures from Mesoamerica to India. The defining characteristic of a bas-relief is that it is not free standing. You may also hear bas-relief referred to as “low relief,” referencing that the objects do not project very far from the background. In cases where objects protrude more prominently, bas-relief is known as “high relief.” Bas-relief can be made by carving wood, hammering or casting metal, and casting materials like ceramics. It can also be executed in stone, including precious and semiprecious gemstones.
Term
Buon fresco
Definition
True fresco -. in its pure form the art of painting upon damp, fresh, lime plaster. In Renaissance Italy it was called buon fresco to distinguish it from fresco secco, which was executed upon dry plaster with pigments having a glue or casein base. In true fresco the binder is provided by the lime of the plaster; in drying this forms a calcium carbonate that incorporates the pure pigments, mixed only with water, with the material of the wall. During the Renaissance it was customary to prepare a cartoon of the same dimensions as the contemplated fresco. To transfer the design to the wall, pounce, or dust, was applied through perforations in the cartoon to the wet coat of plaster (intonaco). The plaster was made of fine sand, lime, and marble dust that was applied in small sections daily. A large fresco therefore consists of many small sections, each painted in a day. The sections were planned in such a way as to make the joinings inconspicuous. As not all colors are lime-proof, fresco does not permit as large a palette or as delicate a manipulation of transitional tones as the oil medium. However, it is clear, luminous color, fine surface, and permanence make it ideal for bold, monumental murals. The Minoans decorated the palace at Knossos and the Romans painted the villas at Pompeii in this fashion. The technique has not altered substantially since the 15th cent., when it was brought to perfection by the great masters of the Italian Renaissance. Only dry climates are hospitable to the medium, so fresco was used rarely in N Europe. The art of fresco painting declined until the 20th cent., when it was revived in Mexico by Diego Rivera and José Clemente Orozco.
Term
Buttress
Definition
To support or prop up construction with a projecting structure, usually built of brick or stone; a massive masonry structure on the exterior wall of a building that presses inward and upward to hold the stone blocks of arches in place. A mass of masonry or brickwork used as a support or brace counteracting the outward (lateral) thrust of an arch or vault. There are at least five distinct types of buttress
Term
Clasping buttresses
Definition
support two walls as they meet at a corner by making some length of both walls at the corner thicker than the remainder of the wall.
Term
Angle buttresses
Definition
Angle buttresseslike clasping buttresses, support walls at the corner but in essence by building each wall out beyond the corner, so that in plan the corner in fact is a cross shape.
Term
Set-back buttresses
Definition
Set-back buttresses support walls near a corner but set back from it.
Term
Diagonal buttresses
Definition
Diagonal buttresses support walls at corners but are built diagonally out of the corner of the wall, so forming a 135° angle between the buttress and each wall
Term
Camera obscura
Definition
was used by Renaissance artists to help them accurately portray depth, or perspective, on two-dimensional surfaces. The camera obscura could be a box or an actual darkened room with a pin hole to project light and an image on the opposite wall. Light rays could pass through the hole to transmit an inverted image of the scene outside the room onto a flat surface on its inside. It is the origin of the present day camera. It was first mentioned by Aristotle in the fourth century BCE, and employed through the centuries as an aid to drawing. These are Latin words, literally meaning "dark room."
Term
Cantilever
Definition
is an engineering term referring to a construction technique in which loads are carried by a beam to a strong mounting point. The beam forms a lever, which carries the load by being held in position by the mount, turning the loads into torque on the mount. Cantilever construction allows for long structures without external bracing. Cantilevers are widely found in construction, notably in cantilever bridges and balconies. Frank Lloyd Wright's Fallingwater used a cantilever to project the large balcony out into "free space".
Term
Cartoon
Definition
derives from the Italian cartone, meaning paper. Originally, a preparatory drawing made for a fresco, usually on paper and drawn to scale. The meaning of cartoon was expanded to include humorous and satirical drawings when a parody of fresco cartoons submitted for decoration of the Houses of Parliament appeared in an English magazine in 1843. All modern cartoons rely on caricature, the gross exaggeration and distortion of natural features to ridicule a social and political target. Cartoons have a long history of social commentary, consciousness raising and political activism. There is an older sense in which a cartoon was a preliminary drawing made the size of the final work. Michelangelo transferred the images of his cartoons onto the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel in the making of his fresco.
Term
Charcoal
Definition
has a long history as a drawing implement. It was used by our primitive ancestors to create images on cave walls. Originally, charcoal was burnt pieces of wood or bone but now take the form of prepared sticks that are formed by the controlled charring of special hardwoods. Charcoal sticks are available in a number of textures that vary from hard to soft. Charcoal may be smudged or rubbed to create a hazy effect. Because charcoal rubs off more easily it must be sprayed with a solution of thinned varnish to keep it affixed. Also, because of the way in which charcoal is dispersed over a surface, the nature of the support is evident in each stroke. Coarsely textured paper will yield a grainy image, whereas smooth paper will provide a clear, almost pencil-like line.
Term
Collage
Definition
An assemblage of two-dimensional objects to create an image; works of art in which materials such as paper, cloth, and wood are pasted to a two-dimensional surface, such as a wooden panel or canvas. A picture or design created by adhering such basically flat elements as newspaper, wallpaper, printed text and illustrations, photographs, cloth, string, etc., to a flat surface, when the result becomes three-dimensional, and might also be called a relief sculpture / construction  / assemblage. Most of the elements adhered in producing most collages are "found" materials. "Collage" was originally a French word, derived from the word coller, meaning "to paste." This term was coined by both Georges Braque and Pablo Picasso in the beginning of the 20th century when collage became a distinctive part of modern art. Glued-on patches which Braque and Picasso added to their canvases offered a new perspective on painting when the patches "collided with the surface plane of the painting." In this perspective, collage was part of a methodical reexamination of the relation between painting and sculpture, and these new works "gave each medium some of the characteristics of the other," according to the Guggenheim essay. Furthermore, these chopped-up bits of newspaper introduced fragments of externally referenced meaning into the collision
Term
Clerestory
Definition
In architecture, this term refers to a wall of a building which is raised above an adjoining room, and this section of wall has windows. The walls of the nave in a Christian church are higher than the roof over the side aisles, for example, and the clerestory contains windows for light and ventilation. Because of the heavy walls, the clerestory windows of a Romanesque church were small and admitted little light. Development of the pointed arch, piers, and flying buttresses in the Gothic cathedral made possible the enlargement of this window area.; A term formerly applied to any window or traceried opening in a church, e.g. in an aisle, tower, cloister, or screen, but now restricted to the windows in an aisled nave, or to the range of wall in which the high windows are set. Sometimes these windows are very small, being mere quatrefoils or spherical triangles. In Large buildings, however, they are important features both of beauty and utility. The clerestory is especially used in churches where the division into nave and side aisles permits the introduction of light into the body of the church from above the aisle roofs. According to Fergusson's theory, the interior of Greek temples was lighted by a clerestory, similar internally to that found in the great Egyptian temples, but externally requiring such a change of arrangement as was necessary to adapt it to a sloping instead of a flat roof. This seems to have been effected by countersinking into the roof, so as to make three ridges in those parts where the light was admitted, though the regular shape of the roof was retained between these openings. Thus, neither the ridge nor the continuity of the lines of the roof was interfered with. This theory is borne out by all the remains of Greek temples that now exist, and by all the descriptions that have been handed down from antiquity.
Term
Daguerreotype
Definition
A photograph made from a silver-coated copper plate. Invented in 1829, by Niepce and Louis-Jacques-Mande Daguerre and was the first commercial photographic process. Each daguerreotype consisted of a copper plate, coated with silver, which when sensitized with iodine vapor, produced silver iodide. After exposure, anywhere from 5 to 40 minutes, the surface was developed by mercury vapor — a process very hazardous to the photographer. The recorded image was reversed, left to right and was so delicate that it had to be sealed behind glass to remain fixed. The plate that was exposed to light became the actual daguerreotype. There was no negative and consequently copies could not be made. Although the daguerreotype process was largely discarded in the mid-1860s, overtaken by the development of other photographic techniques, it has seen something of a revival in recent years
Term
Digital
Definition
Art that makes use of, or is developed with the assistance of electronic instruments, such as computers, that store and manipulate information through the use of series of zeros and ones; including but not limited to web design graphic design and digital photography. Graphics software offers palettes of more than 16 million colors. Colors can be selected and produced on the monitor instantaneously. Effects and lighting can be added and images distorted.
Term
Dome
Definition
in architecture, a hemispherical structure that is round when viewed from beneath. In architecture, a hemispherical [like half a ball] vault or ceiling over a circular opening. A dome can be thought of as an arch which has been rotated around its central vertical axis. Thus domes, like arches, have a great deal of structural strength when properly built and can span large open spaces without interior supports. Corbel domes achieve their shape by extending each circular layer of stones inward slightly farther than the previous, lower, one until they meet at the top. These are sometimes called 'false' domes. 'True', or 'real' domes are formed with increasingly inward-angled layers which have ultimately turned 90 degrees from the base of the dome to the top. Domes have been constructed from a variety of building materials over the centuries
Term
Corbel domes
Definition
Corbel domes have been found in the ancient Middle East in modest buildings and tombs. The construction of technically advanced large-scale true domes began in the Roman Architectural Revolution, when they were frequently used by the Romans to shape large interior spaces of temples and public buildings, such as the Pantheon. This tradition continued unabated after the adoption of Christianity in the Byzantine (East Roman) religious and secular architecture, culminating in the revolutionary pendentive dome of the 6th century church Hagia Sophia. With the Muslim conquest of the Sassanid Empire and the Byzantine Near East, the dome also became a feature of Muslim architecture. An original tradition of using multiple domes was developed in the church architecture in Russia, which had adopted Orthodox Christianity from Byzantium. Russian domes are often gilded or brightly painted, and typically have a carcass and an outer shell made of wood or metal. The onion dome became another distinctive feature in the Russian architecture, often in combination with the tented roof.
Term
Etching
Definition
in printmaking, an intaglio process in which the matrix is first covered with an acid-resistant ground consisting of wax or resin. When the ground has hardened, the image is drawn upon it with a fine needle. Little pressure is exerted to expose the ground; the plate itself is not scratched. The matrix is slipped into an acid bath which immediately begins to eat away, or etch, the exposed areas of the plate. The longer the plate remains in the acid solution, the deeper the etching. Deeper crevices hold more ink, and for this reason they print darker lines. Etching is a versatile medium, capable of many types of lines and effects.
Term
Façade
Definition
A French term for the face or front of a building. The front or face of a building. The façade accents the entrance of a building and usually prepares the visitor for the architectural style found inside. Also, any other sides of a building when they are emphasized architecturally
Term
Fenestration
Definition
The arrangement of windows and doors in a structure, often used to create balance and rhythm as well as light, air and access. The design and arrangement of windows in architecture. Architects sometimes refer to the windows of a building as the glazing. It is derived from the French word fenêtre. In medieval times when glass was scarce, this described the layout of wooden panels used to shutter the windows
Term
Groin vaults
Definition
A groin vault or groined vault (also sometimes known as a double barrel vault or cross vault) is produced by the intersection at right angles of two barrel vaults. The word groin refers to the edge between the intersecting vaults. Sometimes the arches of groin vaults are pointed instead of round. In comparison with a barrel vault, a groin vault provides good economies of material and labor. The thrust is concentrated along the groins or arrises (the four diagonal edges formed along the points where the barrel vaults intersect), so the vault need only be abutted at its four corners.
Term
Ground
Definition
the surface on which a two-dimensional work of art is created; a coat of liquid material applied to a surface that serves as a base for drawing or painting. A surface to which paint is applied, or the material used to create that surface. A painting's ground is usually specially prepared on its support. Traditionally, for oil paint on canvas use a ground of oil and white pigment, and on wood surfaces either an oil ground or gesso. Within a picture, ground may refer to a surrounding or background area. Also, in etching, it's an acid-resistant compound through which a design is drawn
Term
Hatching
Definition
Hatching (hachure in French) is an artistic technique used to create tonal or shading effects by drawing (or painting or scribing) closely spaced parallel lines. When lines are placed at an angle to one another, it is called cross-hatching. Hatching is especially important in essentially linear media, such as drawing, and many forms of printmaking, such as engraving, etching and woodcut. In Western art, hatching originated in the Middle Ages, and developed further into cross-hatching, especially in the old master prints of the fifteenth century. Master ES and Martin Schongauer in engraving and Erhard Reuwich and Michael Wolgemut in woodcut were pioneers of both techniques, and Albrecht Dürer in particular perfected the technique of crosshatching in both media. Artists use the technique, varying the length, angle, closeness and other qualities of the lines, most commonly in drawing, linear painting, engraving, and ethnic art. The main concept is that the quantity, thickness and spacing of the lines will affect the brightness of the overall image, and emphasize forms creating the illusion of volume. Hatching lines should always follow the forms. By increasing quantity, thickness and closeness, a darker area will result. An area of shading next to another area which has lines going in another direction is often used to create contrast.
Term
Lithography
Definition
Invented in the 19th century by German playwright Aloys Senefelder. Unlike intaglio printing , the lithography matrix is flat. Lithography is a surface or planographic printing process. The artist draws an image with a greasy crayon directly on a flat stone slab. Small particles of crayon adhere to the granular texture of the stone matrix. A solution of nitric acid is applied as a fixative. The entire surface of the matrix is then dampened with water. The untouched areas of the surface accept the water, but the waxy crayon marks repel it. A roller is then used to cover the stone with an oily ink. The ink adheres to the crayon drawing but repels the water. When paper is pressed to the stone surface, the ink on the crayon is transferred to the paper, revealing the image.  
Term
Matrix
Definition
in printmaking, the working surface of the block, slab, or screen. In sculpture, a mold or hollow shape used to give form to a material that is inserted in a plastic or molten state.
Term
Mobile
Definition
In two-dimensional works of art, the creation of the illusion of depth through the use of light and shade. A type of sculpture characterized by the ability to move when propelled by air currents, by touch, or by a small motor at any one time. The most striking feature of the mobile is that, unlike traditional sculpture, it achieves its artistic effect through movement; it is the most familiar form of kinetic art, which requires movement of some kind. A typical mobile consists of a group of shapes, frequently abstract, that are connected by wires, string, metal rods, or the like. Although mobiles are usually suspended, some are designed to stand on a platform or floor. The first experimental mobiles were the work of the French artist Marcel Duchamp in the 1920s. The form, however, was developed to its finest expression so far by the American sculptor Alexander Calder, beginning in the 1930s.
Term
Pendentive
Definition
in architecture, a constructive device permitting the placing of a circular dome over a square room or an elliptical dome over a rectangular room. The pendentives, which are triangular segments of a sphere, taper to points at the bottom and spread at the top to establish the continuous circular or elliptical base needed for the dome. In masonry the pendentives thus receive the weight of the dome, concentrating it at the four corners where it can be received by the piers beneath. Prior to the pendentive's development, the device of corbelling or the use of the squinch in the corners of a room had been employed. Pendentives were commonly used in Orthodox, Renaissance, and Baroque churches, with a drum with windows often inserted between the pendentives and the dome. The first experimentation with pendentives were made in Roman dome construction beginning in the 2nd–3rd century AD,[ while full development of the form was achieved in the 6th century Eastern Roman Hagia Sophia at Constantinople.
Term
Post-and-lintel
Definition
In architecture, the simplest and oldest way of constructing an opening. Two vertical structural members called posts were used to support a horizontal member called a lintel or beam, creating a covered space. Post and Lintel is a simple Architrave where a horizontal member is supported by two vertical posts at either end. This form is commonly used to support the weight of the structure located above the openings in a bearing wall created by windows and doors.
Term
A lintel
Definition
A lintel is a horizontal beam used in the construction of buildings, and is a major architectural contribution of ancient Greece. It usually supports the Masonry above a Window or Door opening.
Term
a trabeated system
Definition
In architecture, a trabeated system or order refers to the use of horizontal beams or lintels which are borne up by columns or posts. It is the opposite of the arcuated system, which involves the use of arches.
Term
Readymades
Definition
Found objects that are exhibited as works of art, frequently after being placed in a new context with a new title. An object manufactured for some other purpose, presented by an artist as a work of art. Between 1914 and 1921, Marcel Duchamp (French, 1887-1968), who originated this concept, selected and signed, among others, a snow shovel, a comb, and a urinal. He occasionally altered readymades (sometimes called assisted readymades) — the most famous of which was a cheap reproduction of Mona Lisa on which Duchamp drew a mustache. This is a 20th century artistic trend. .
Term
Silverpoint
Definition
one of the oldest drawing media. It was used widely from the late Middle Ages to the early 1500’s. Silverpoint drawings are created by dragging a silver-tipped implement over a surface that has been coated with a ground of bone dust or chalk mixed with gum, water, and pigment. The ground is sufficiently coarse to allow small flecks of silver from the instrument to adhere to the prepared surface as it is drawn across. These bits of metal form the lines of the drawing; they are barely visible at the start but eventually oxidize, becoming tarnished or darkened and making the image visible. Each silverpoint line, a soft gray to begin with, mellows and darkens to a grayish brown hue. Because they lack sharp tonal contrasts, the resultants drawings are often extremely delicate in appearance. The technique of working in silverpoint is itself delicate. The medium allows for little or no correction.
Term
Stippling
Definition
drawing or painting small dots or dabs to create shading or a dappled effect. Stipple is a drawing, painting, or engraving method employing dots rather than lines. Stippled works can be produced with any of a variety of tools, including pencils, crayons, pens, and brushes. The broadly distributed bristles of this stipple brush are all the same length, allowing the application of a mass of fine dots. A stipple brush is often used by painters of faux textures — simulating granite and sandstone for instance.prelief printing artistic technique in printmaking in which an image is carved into the surface of a block of wood, with the printing parts remaining level with the surface while the non-printing parts are removed, typically with gouges. The areas to show 'white' are cut away with a knife or chisel, leaving the characters or image to show in 'black' at the original surface level. The block is cut along the grain of the wood (unlike wood engraving where the block is cut in the end-grain). In Europe beechwood was most commonly used; in Japan, a special type of cherry wood was used. Woodcutting is the oldest form of printmaking
Term
Vault
Definition
A vault, in architecture, is an arch-shaped structure, usually of masonry, used as the ceiling of a room or other enclosed space, as the roof of a building, or as the support for a ceiling or roof. Masonry vaults are usually composed of wedge-shaped pieces called voussoirs, which are held in place, like the stones of an arch, by the pressure of the neighboring pieces. Because of the combined pressure of its components, any arch exerts an outward pressure at its base, and the base, therefore, must be so constructed as to withstand the outward as well as the downward thrust of the arch. This construction can be accomplished by using strong, heavy walls to support the arch or by supporting the walls with exterior structures, or buttresses. A temporary supporting structure must be erected within the vaulted area during construction, because a masonry vault does not become self-supporting until the central voussoirs or keystones are put in place.
Term
Vehicle
Definition
a liquid such as water or oil with which pigments are mixed for painting. In the visual arts, that which carries a paint's pigments, and is also called a medium or a base. The vehicle is what determines what kind of paint is produced. A painter can mix a vehicle with its solvents, pigments and other substances in order to make paint (or dye or ink) and control its consistency. A variety of vehicles are available that provide a matte, semi-gloss, or glossy finish. Just as motorized vehicles move us around on our planet, think of these substances as moving pigments around on various supports.
Term
Lumiere Brothers and Edison
Definition
The Lumière brothers, Auguste and Louis, were sons of well known Lyons based portrait painter Antoine Lumière. They were both technically minded and excelled in science subjects and were sent to Technical School.
Term
the Autochrome Plate.
Definition
In 1907 they produced the first practical color photography process, the Autochrome Plate.
Term
ART
Definition
Includes ability,
process, and product,
but a definition for this
word is difcult to find
Term
AESTHETICS
Definition
A branch of
Philosopy which
evaluates art and
beauty.
Term
STYLE
Definition
Distinctive characteristics
of the artwork which can be
associated to the work of an
individual artist or a a specic
culture or period
Term
FORM
Definition
The totality of the
visual elements which
make the composition
of a work of art.
Term
CONTENT
Definition
The subject matter
or the message
in a work of art.
Term
PERFORMANCE
ART
Definition
A public demonstration or
happening which is carefully
orchestrated by
an artist as a media event.
Term
DESIGN
Definition
Combining
visual elements using
set principles to
achieve a composition.
Term
VISUAL ELEMENTS
Definition
Line, Shape, Value,
Color, and Texture, etc.
The building blocks of
a work of art.
Term
LINE
Definition
Dened as a dot in
motion, this is the
most basic building
block in art.
Term
OUTLINE
Definition
This serves to define the
edge of a shape or form
as separate from its
surrounding space, without
giving a sense of
three dimensions.
Term
CONTOUR LINE
Definition
By varying its width and
contrast, this identifes the
edge of an object
with the illusion of threedimensional
space.
Term
ACTUAL LINE
Definition
Points in space which
are connected and
continuous.
Term
IMPLIED LINE
Definition
Points in space which are
connected or completed
by the viewer through
closure of disconnected
points.
Term
SHAPE
Definition
An area which is
separated from the
surrounding space
by a boundary. Oval,
Square, Circle, etc.
Term
BIOMORPHIC
SHAPE
Definition
An area which has
the appearance
of a life form.
Term
ACTUAL TEXTURE
Definition
The tactile quality
of art -- rough, smooth,
sharp, etc.
Term
MODELING
Definition
creates the illusion of
roundness or three
dimensionality in 2-
dimensional art OR
shaping a pliable material
into a 3-dimensional form.
Term
STIPPLING
Definition
Drawing or painting small
dots to create an image,
value, or color.
Term
HATCHING
Definition
Parallel lines drawn or
engraved to represent
shade or value.
Term
CROSS-HATCHING
Definition
Intersecting sets of
parallel lines drawn or
engraved to represent
shade or value.
Term
CONTOUR HATCHING
Definition
Curved or direction changes
of parallel lines drawn or engraved
to represent shade,
value , and the illusion of 3
dimensions of an object.
Term
VOLUME
Definition
The mass, bulk, or
space contained
(actual or implied) by a
3-dimensional object.
Term
MASS
Definition
In 2-d, a large uniformly
defined area, in 3-d, the
bulk of the object.
Term
FIGURE
Definition
The primary subject,
often the likeness of
a human.
Term
GROUND
Definition
The surrounding space
around a gure; or, the
protective coat of liquid
material applied to a
surface and used as a
base for drawing.
Term
FIGURE AND GROUND
RELATIONSHIP
Definition
The interaction between
the primary subject and
other parts of the
composition.
Term
VALUE
Definition
Lightness or
darkness of a
surface.
Term
CHIAROSCURO
Definition
From the Italian for
"light-dark” or “lightobscured”,
this term is
sometimes used in place
of the word modeling
Term
TEXTURE
Definition
The surface character
of a material experienced
through the sense of
touch.
Term
GEOMETRIC SHAPE
Definition
An area which is
regular and precise.
Term
SPACE
Definition
Considered to be an
element of art, it refers
to distances or areas
around, between
or within. 2-D or 3-D
Term
LINEAR PERSPECTIVE
Definition
First known in the Renaissance,
parallel lines converge
at one or more vantage
points on the horizon to
create the illusion of depth
Term
TIME
Definition
Evidence of motion which
has occurred or is occurring.
It is actual in Performance Art
and Film, stopped in photos,
implied in painting
and Sculpture.
Term
MOTION
Definition
Movement.
Term
COLOR
Definition
The visible perception
of the wavelengths of
light reflected on an
object.
Term
HUE
Definition
Another word for
Color
Term
SATURATION
Definition
The pureness of a color
Term
SHADE
Definition
Color produced by
adding black--the
degree of darkness.
Term
TINT
Definition
Color produced by
adding white
Term
COOL COLOR
Definition
Blue, green and violet:
hues related to water.
These colors appear to
recede away from the
viewer.
Term
FIGURE AND GROUND
REVERSAL
Definition
Visual ambiguity caused
by the viewer’s ability to
perceive the shift the
importance of elements.
Face/Vase is an example.
Term
WARM COLOR
Definition
Red, orange, and yellow
the hues found in re.
These colors appear to
advance toward the
viewer.
Term
COMPLEMENTARY
COLORS
Definition
The colors opposite each
other on the color wheel
Term
ANALOGOUS COLORS
Definition
Neighbors on the
color wheel
Term
PIGMENTS
Definition
Color producing
material which is
ground and mixed
with a binder.
Term
PRIMARY COLORS
Definition
Red, Blue, and Yellow:
All other colors except
white can be made by
mixing amounts of
these three colors
Term
LOCAL COLOR
Definition
The hue created by the
normal light reflected
on an object’s surface.
Naive artists often
use this.
Term
OPTICAL COLOR
Definition
The hue perceived by
the amount of light
reected on an object’s
surface in various
atmosheric conditions.
Term
IMPASTO
Definition
The thick buildup
of paint-so that it
protrudes from
the support.
Term
COMPOSITION
Definition
The organization of
visual elements in a
work of art.
Term
PRINCIPLES OF
DESIGN
Definition
Unity, variety, repetion,
balance, emphasis, rhythm,
scale, and proportion are
used in compositions.
Term
UNITY
Definition
Oneness or
Wholeness
Term
ICONOGRAPHY
Definition
The study of the
meaning of gures
and symbols in the
visual arts:
Term
SUBTRACTIVE
PROCESS
Definition
Removing or carving
material to create
sculpture.
Term
ADDITIVE PROCESS
Definition
Modeling, casting, sewing
constructing, assembling,
or building materials to
create sculpture.
Term
FORMULIST
CRITICISM
Definition
Evaluation of the
compositional design
of a work of art.
Term
KINETIC
SCULPTURE
Definition
Moving 3-dimensional
works of art.
Term
MOBILE
Definition
3-dimensional forms
balanced by fulcrums,
often creating actual
motion when pushed
by a current of air.
Term
FREESTANDING
Definition
3-Dimensional works of
art which are intended
to be viewed from
many vantage points.
Term
RELIEF
Definition
Sculpture carved on a
two dimensional
surface.
Term
BAS-RELIEF
Definition
sculptures which project
only slightly from
the background to which
they are attached.
Term
HIGH RELIEF
Definition
sculptures which project
a great deal away from
the background to which
they are attached.
Term
ASSEMBLAGES
Definition
A work of art produced by
the combination of many
parts or small ready made
objects.
Term
LIGHT SCULPTURE
Definition
Articial illumination
used to create works
of art.
Term
LAND ART
Definition
Using world resources
to create works of art.
Term
EARTHWORKS
Definition
Dirt, rocks, ice, etc.
are shaped to create
Land Art.
Term
DRAWING
Definition
The PENCIL is used
in this medium.
Term
PAINTING
Definition
ENCAUSTIC uses
wax and pigment to
create this medium
Term
ENCAUSTIC
Definition
This type of PAINTING
uses wax as a binder.
Term
PRINTMAKING
Definition
A BURIN is used to
engrave a line in this
medium.
Term
MIXED MEDIA
Definition
More than one process
for creating art is used
in this type of artwork.
Term
SCULPTURE
Definition
Clay can be used in
this medium.
Term
DRAWING
Definition
CHARCOAL is used in
this medium.
Term
PRINTMAKING
Definition
A DRYPOINT NEEDLE
is used to create line
in this medium.
Term
IMAGING
Definition
FILM is used in this
medium.
Term
DRAWING
Definition
CHALK is used
in this medium.
Term
PAINTING
Definition
TEMPERA uses
EGG and pigment to
create this medium
Term
IMAGING
Definition
A LENS captures
light on objects in
this medium.
Term
PRINTMAKING
Definition
GROUND is used to
protect the metal
in this medium.
Term
DRAWING
Definition
CRAYONS are used
in this medium.
Term
SCULPTURE
Definition
WOOD can be used in
this medium.
Term
DRAWING
Definition
GRAPHITE is used
in this medium.
Term
PAINTING
Definition
OIL is used as a
binding agent to
create this medium.
Term
PRINTMAKING
Definition
SILKSCREEN is
often used to make
t-shirts in this medium.
Term
PRINTMAKING
Definition
The SQUEEGEE is
used to press the
ink onto the surface
in this medium.
Term
DRAWING
Definition
PASTELS are used in
this medium.
Term
SCULPTURE
Definition
STONE can be used in
this medium.
Term
PRINTMAKING
Definition
An INK ROLLER
is used to press ink
onto the surface in
this medium.
Term
IMAGING
Definition
A CAMERA is used in
this medium.
Term
DRAWING
Definition
PEN and INK is used
in this medium.
Term
PAINTING
Definition
WATERCOLOR uses
gum arabic and
pigment to
create this medium.
Term
IMAGING
Definition
The APERTURE is
used as the eye of a
camera in this medium.
Term
PRINTMAKING
Definition
GAUZE is used to
remove ink in this
medium.
Term
SCULPTURE
Definition
A MOLD is used in
this medium.
Term
PAINTING
Definition
ACRYLIC can be used
as a binder in
this medium.
Term
PAINTING
Definition
Pigment SPRAYED
onto a surface is a
method to create
this medium.
Term
PAINTING
Definition
GOUACHE is
opaque watercolor
used in this medium.
Term
PRINTMAKING
Definition
A HATCHER can
be used to create
value in this medium.
Term
PRINTMAKING
Definition
A GRAVER is used to
engrave a line in this
medium.
Term
IMAGING
Definition
A TELEPHOTO LENS
is used in
this medium.
Term
Definition