The following definitions are basic explanations of Art Movements, Art and Technical Terms to assist users to identify the category, style or medium of their art. Click on the main heading below that applies. Contributions or/and corrections always appreciated.


Abstract - Not realistic. A 20th century style of painting in which the representation of real objects is completely absent. Can also sometimes be referred to as non-representational or non-objective and consisting of lines, colours, shapes and forms.

Abstract Expressionism - 1940's New York painting movement based on Abstract Art. This type of painting can also be referred to as action painting.

Acrylic - Thicker and stronger than tempera or watercolour paint, Acrylic is a fast drying water-based "plastic" paint. The advantages of acrylic over oil paint is that it dries more quickly and it is less toxic.

Art Deco - During the 1920's and 30's, artists used decorative motifs derived from French, African, Asian, Aztec, Chinese and Egyptian cultures.

Artist's Resale Right - Also called 'Droit de suite' this is a royalty due to some European living artists on the resale price of their work. Very basically this only applies when the art is sold by 'art professionals' (dealers, auction houses, galleries etc.) on the secondary market for more than Euros 1000 (approx £750.00). This royalty is 4% of the selling price for all sales up to Euros 50,000. It does NOT apply to works sold between private individuals nor to any sales made on the primary market (first time sales). See for full details.

Art Nouveau - A painting, printmaking, decorative design, and architectural style developed in England in the 1880s. Art Nouveau, primarily an ornamental style, used asymmetrical decorative elements derived from objects inspired by nature. The style is characterized by the usage of graceful, cursive lines, interlaced patterns, flowers, plants, insects and other motifs.

Avant-garde - A group active in the invention and application of new ideas and techniques in an original or experimental way. A group of practitioners and/or advocates of a new art form may also be called avant-garde. Some avant-garde works are intended to shock those who are accustomed to traditional, established styles.

Bauhaus - A design school founded by Walter Gropius in 1919 in Germany. The Bauhaus attempted to achieve reconciliation between the aesthetics of design and the more commercial demands of industrial mass production. Artists include Klee, Kandinsky and Feininger

Beaux-arts - A school of fine arts located in Paris which stressed the necessity of academic painting.

Batik - Paraffin or beeswax is used to resist paint or dye on fabric or paper. Designs and patterns are produced on the unwaxed areas.

Canvas - Fabrics that are prepared for painting. Available in panels, stretched on frames, or obtained by the yard.

Celebrity art - again another totally non-art term but used on this site to allow fast search for art that depicts or has been produced by celebrities.

Certificate of Authenticity - Certifies the authenticity of an individual piece in an edition usually provided by the gallery or dealer where the piece was originally purchased.

Cityscape art - a non-art term but incorporated on Artbank to allow fast seraches for art that depicts cities and architecture. 

Classical Style - In Greek art, the style of the 5th century B.C. Loosely, the term 'classical' is often applied to all the art of ancient Greece and Rome, as well as to any art based on logical, rational principles and deliberate composition.

Collage - Collage is from the French meaning "paste up". The combination of different textured materials such as pieces of cloth, magazines and other found objects which are glued to a surface to create artwork.

Collograph - This name is derived from the word 'collage'. It is an image built up with glue and other materials.

Conceptual art - The basic idea of conceptual art is that the 'concept' behind it is more impotant than the technical skills that were used to produce it. It became a bit of a 'phenomenon' in the 1960's with many of the ideas drawn from philosophy, feminism and psychoanalysis.

Contemporary art - Generally defined as art which was produced during the second half of the 20th century.

Copyright - Copyright to all art and photography remains with the artist or photographer unless assigned in writing. Copyright to all images on this website remain with the creator and all reproduction for any purposes is strictly forbidden unless approved in writing.

Cubism - A revolutionary art movement between 1907 and 1914 in which natural forms were changed by geometrical reduction. Leading figures include Pablo Picasso and Georges Braque.

Dadaism - An art style founded by Hans Arp in Zurich after WW1 which challenged the established canons of art, thoughts and morality etc. Disgusted with the war and society in general, Dadaist expressed their feelings by creating 'non-art.'

Decorative art - again not really an 'art term' but used by Artbank for fast search for art that may be usable in a decorative manner within a office or home environment - art that complements its surroundings.

Distemper - This painting technique involves the use of powdered colors that are mixed with glue size, or such things as egg yolk.

Droit de suite - This is a royalty sometimes due to living artists on the resale price of their work. It does NOT apply to works sold between private individuals. See 'Artists Resale Right' above or visit for further information.

Dry Brushing - Technique used in paintings using more pigment then water.

Egg Tempera - Water-based paint made with an egg yoke binder.

Encaustic - Pigment is mixed with melted wax and resin and then applied to a surface while hot.

Expressionism - A concept of painting in which traditional adherence to realism and proportion is over-ridden by the intensity of an artist's emotional response to the subject.

Fresco - Pigment is applied directly to damp plaster making this wall painting medium one of the most permanent form of wall decoration.

Encaustic - This ancient art uses colored wax for painting. This technique involves painting images onto walls with pigments that are blended with wax. When used with heat, such as an iron, the permanent color is burned into the wall, for good.

Expressionism - An art movement of the early 20th century in which traditional adherence to realism and proportion was replaced by the artist's emotional connection to the subject. These paintings are often abstract, the subject matter distorted in color and form to emphasize and express the intense emotion of the artist.

Fauvism - A short-lived painting style in early 20th century France, which featured bold, clashing, arbitrary colors - colors unrelated to the appearance of forms in the natural world. Henri Matisse was its best-known practitioner. The word fauve means 'wild beast.'

Figurative - Art which depicts reconizable images of ther world around us. In Artbank's case we use it loosely to refer to art with figures in it.

Fine Art - An art form created primarily as an aesthetic expression to be enjoyed for its own sake. The viewer must be prepared to search for the intent of the artist as the all-important first step toward communication and active participation.

Futurism - Art movement founded in Italy in 1909 and lasting only a few years. Futurism concentrated on the dynamic quality of modern technological life, emphasizing speed and movement.

Gesso - An under-painting medium consisting of glue, plaster of Paris or chalk and water. Gesso is used to size the canvas and prepare the surface for painting.

Glaze - Colour that is thinned to a transparent state and applied over previously painted areas to modify the original color.

Gold Leaf - Used for gilding, gold or silver (for silver leafing) is beaten to extremely thin sheets.

Gouache - A watercolour medium which is mixed with finely ground white pigment to provide an opaque paint. Displayed originals should be kept behind glass.

Iconography - Loosely, the 'story' depicted in a work of art; people, places, events, and other images in a work, as well as the symbolism and conventions attached to those images by a particular religion or culture.

Illustration - Illustration can usually be defined as art that has been initially produced for commercial reproduction such as in advertising or publishing (books, newspapers etc.) usage. The line between an illustrator and an 'artist' is often blurred and many of todays most respected artists have evolved via illustration. Some illustrators have two distinct diciplines and produce both illustration and fine art with totally different styles. See end category Illustration/Animation for further information.

Impasto - A manner of painting where the paint is laid on thickly so texture stands out in relief.

Impressionism - Founded in France impressionism is a painting technique in which the artist concentrates on the changing effects of light and colour. This style of painting is characterized by short brush strokes of bright colours used to recreate visual impressions of the subject and to capture the light, climate and atmosphere of the subject at a specific moment in time.

Landscape - Art that depicts landscapes and seascapes. Normally this could include 'cityscapes' as well but Artbank have put this in a seperate category.

Linseed Oil - Used as a medium. The traditional 'binder' for the pigments in oil paints.

Mannerism - A term sometimes applied to art of late 16th early 17th century Europe, characterized by a dramatic use of space and light and a tendency toward elongated figures.

Medieval Art - The art of the Middle Ages ca. 500 A.D. through the 14th century. The art produced immediately prior to the Renaissance.

Medium - The material used to create a work of art. Also, a term used for the binder for paint, such as oil.

Minimalism - A style of painting and sculpture in the mid 20th century in which the art elements are rendered with a minimum of lines, shapes, and sometimes colour. The works may look and feel sparse, spare, restricted or empty.

Mixed Media - Descriptive of art that employs more than one medium - e.g., a work that combines paint, natural materials (wood, pebbles, bones), and man made items (glass, plastic, metals, wax) into a single image or piece of art.

Monochromatic - Having only one colour. Descriptive of work in which one hue - perhaps with variations of value and intensity - predominates.

Monotype - A one-of-a-kind print made by painting on a sheet or slab of glass and transferring the still-wet painting to a sheet of paper held firmly on the glass by rubbing the back of the paper with a smooth implement, such as a large hardwood spoon. The painting may also be done on a polished plate, in which case it may be either printed by hand or transferred to the paper by running the plate and paper through an etching press.

Montage - A picture composed of other existing illustrations, pictures, photographs, newspaper clippings, etc. that are arranged so they combine to create a new or original image. A collage.

Mural - A large-scale continuous wall decoration done as painting, fresco, mosaic, or other medium.

Naive - A childlike style of painting, employing bright colours and strong, rhythmic designs. It can be the work of self-taught artists with no formal training, and is less technical in approach. Outstanding naive artists include Henri Rousseau and Camille Bombois (1883 -1970) in France, and Alfred Wallis in England. The term is also used to describe the work of trained artists who employ naive techniques and effects, for example, L S Lowry, Martin Leman etc. Can also sometimes be referred to as primitive - although this does have other connotations.

Narrative Painting - A painting where a story line serves as a dominant feature.

Naturalistic - Descriptive of an artwork that closely resembles forms in the natural world. Synonymous with representational.

Neo-classicism - -New' classicism - a style in 19th century Western art that referred back to the classical styles of Greece and Rome. Neo classical paintings have sharp outlines, reserved emotions, deliberate (often mathematical) composition, and cool colors. The leading Neoclassical painter in France was Jacques Louis David (pronounced Dah veed). His Death of Socrates shows the famous Greek philosopher in prison surrounded by his followers.

Neo-Expressionism - 'New' expressionism - a term originally applied to works done primarily by German and Italian artists, who came to maturity in the post-WWII era; and later expanded (in the 1980's) to include certain American artists. Neo- Expressionist works depict intense emotions and symbolism, sometimes using unconventional media and intense colors with turbulent compositions and subject matter.

Nude art - Self explanatory and one of the most collectable forms of art. Our category is there for fast search of this art form.

Oil paint - A powdered pigment which is held together by oil - usually linseed oil

Outsider art - Generally the work of artists who demonstrate little influence from the mainstream art world and untrained artists. Sometimes referred to as visionary and intuative - basically it is art that does not fit into any mainstream category.

- Descriptive of paintings in which forms are defined principally by color areas, not by lines or edges. Where the artist's brushstrokes are noticeable. Any image that looks as though it may have been created with the style or techniques used by a painter.

Pastel - Colours go from soft to brilliant in a stick form. When the paper is covered completely, it is known as a pastel painting. When the paper is exposed through the pastel, it is known as a pastel sketch.

Perspective - The representation of three-dimensional objects on a flat surface so as to produce the same impression of distance and relative size as that received by the human eye. In one-point linear perspective, developed during the fifteenth century, all parallel lines in a given visual field converge at a single vanishing point on the horizon. In aerial or atmospheric perspective, the relative distance of objects is indicated by gradations of tone and colour and by variations in the clarity of outlines.

Photorealism - A painting and drawing style of the mid 20th century in which people, objects, and scenes are depicted with such naturalism that the paintings resemble photographs - an almost exact visual duplication of the subject.

Pointillism - A branch of French Impressionism in which the principle of optical mixture or broken colour was carried to the extreme of applying color in tiny dots or small, isolated strokes. Forms are visible in a pointillist painting only from a distance, when the viewer's eye blends the colours to create visual masses and outlines. The inventor and chief exponent of pointillism was George Seurat (1859-1891); the other leading figure was Paul Signac (1863-1935).

Polychromatic - Having many colours, as opposed to monochromatic which means only one hue or color.

Pop Art - A style of art which seeks its inspiration from commercial art and items of mass culture (such as comic strips, popular foods and brand name packaging). Pop art was first developed in New York City in the 1950's and soon became the dominant avant-garde art form in the United States. Exponents included Andy Warhol, Claus Oldenberg, Roy Lichtenstein, Larry Rivers Robert Rauschenberg, George Segal and Jasper Johns.

Post Impressionism - A term applied to the work of several artists - French or living in France - from about 1885 to 1900. Although they all painted in highly personal styles, the Post-Impressionists were united in rejecting the relative absence of form characteristic of Impressionism and stressed more formal qualities and the significance of subject matter.

Prehistoric Art - Art forms predating recorded history, such as Old, Middle, and New Stone Ages.

Pre-Columbian - Art created in the America's by native people that pre-dates the discovery of the new world

Primary Colours - Red, Yellow, Blue. Varying combinations of the primary hues can be used to create all the other hues of the spectrum.

Primitive Art - Paintings and drawings of and by peoples and races outside the influence of accepted Western styles. Also, works by artists with a 'naive' style often due to little, if any, training (or works intentionally made to look this way). See also 'Naive art'.

Realism - Any art in which the goal is to portray forms in the natural world in a highly representational manner. Specifically, an art style of the mid 19th century, which fostered the idea that everyday people and events are worthy subjects for important art.

Religious art - Self explanatory and used here as a fast search term facility for this very collectable art form.

Renaissance - The period in Europe from the 14th to the 16th century, characterized by a renewed interest in Classical art, architecture, literature, and philosophy. The Renaissance began in Italy and gradually spread to the rest of Europe. In art, it is most closely associated with Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo, and Raphael.

Representational - Works of art that closely resemble forms in the natural world. Synonymous with naturalistic

Rococo - A style of art popular in Europe in the first three quarters of the 18th century, Rococo architecture and furnishings emphasized ornate but small-scale decoration, curvilinear forms, and pastel colors. Rococo painting has a playful, light-hearted romantic quality and often pictures the aristocracy at leisure.

Romanesque - A style of architecture and art dominant in Europe from the 9th to the 12th century. Romanesque architecture, based on ancient Roman precedents, emphasizes the round arch and barrel vault.

Romanticism - A movement in Western art of the 19th century generally assumed to be in opposition to Neoclassicism. Romantic works are marked by intense colors, turbulent emotions, complex composition, soft outlines, and sometimes heroic subject matter.

Sfumato - From the Italian work for 'smoke', a technique of painting in thin glazes to achieve a hazy, cloudy atmosphere, often to represent objects or landscape meant to be perceived as distant from the picture plane.

Sport art - Another definitely 'non art' term but used by Artbank to facilitate fast search for art that depicts sport such as baseball, hockey, cricket and soccer (football).

Still Life - A painting or other two-dimensional work in which the subject matter is an arrangement of objects - fruit, flowers, tableware, pottery, and so forth - brought together for their pleasing contrasts of shape, color, and texture. Artists closely associated with still life art of apples, grapes, and bowls are Vermeer, Chardin, Cezanne, Van Gogh, Monet, Matisse, and Braque.

Spiritual art - Positive, colourful and spiritually uplifting - new age art. We use it loosely as a category for 'feel good' art.

Stippling - A pattern of closely spaced dots or small marks used to create a sense of three-dimensionally on a flat surface, especially in drawing and printmaking. See also hatching, cross-hatching.

Study - A detailed drawing or painting made of one or more parts of a final composition, but not the whole work.

Surreal & Surrealism - Basically 'illogical art'. A painting style of the early 20th century that emphasized imagery and visions from dreams and fantasies, as well as an intuitive, spontaneous method of recording such imagery, often combining unrelated or unexpected objects in compositions. The works of Magritte, Dali, Ernst, Kahlo, Bellmer, Gorky and Wadsworth could be included in the genre.

Symbol - An image or sign that represents something else, because of convention, association, or resemblance.

Symbolism - An art style developed in the late 19th century characterized by the incorporation of symbols and ideas, usually spiritual or mystical in nature, which represent the inner life of people. Traditional modeled, pictorial depictions are replaced or contrasted by flat mosaic-like surfaces decoratively embellished with figures and design elements.

Tempera - Tempera is a word used to describe any type of binder such as oil, water or egg that makes a pigment workable as a paint form.

Triptych - A three-part work of art; especially a painting, with three panels that fold or hang together.

Trompe-L'oeil - A French term meaning 'deception of the eye'. A painting or other work of two-dimensional art rendered in such a photographically realistic manner as to 'trick' the viewer into thinking it is three-dimensional reality.

Underpainting - The traditional stage in oil painting of using a monochrome or dead colour as a base for composition. Also known as laying in.

Value - The relative lightness or darkness of a hue, or of a neutral varying from white to black.

Vanishing Point - In linear perspective, the point on the horizon line where parallel lines appear to converge.

Wash - Used in watercolor painting, brush drawing, and occasionally in oil painting and sculpture to describe a broad thin layer of diluted pigment, ink, glaze or patina. Also refers to a drawing made in this technique.

Watercolour - A coloured pigment mixed with a binder and water to give a translucent effect. Original paintings in watercolour  should be kept out of direct light at all times.




Albumen Print - As used in photography printing processes. Egg whites are used in the emulsion.

Alternative Process - This photography term covers approximately 35 different processes for the final unconventional effect.

Cibachrome - A process where a photographic print can be made directly from a colour transparency.

Dye Transfer - This is one of the most permanent colour processes. This method gives maximum control of colour, balance and contrast for colour prints or transparencies.

Platinum/Palladium Print - Mainly credited to the experiments and dedication of American photographer Irving Penn, Platinum prints allow the photographer to manipulate a print during processing to produce prints of extraordinary intensity and depth.

Silver print - This generic term covers all prints made on paper that is coated with silver salts. Black and white photographs are usually silver prints.





Aquatint - A printing technique capable of producing unlimited tonal graduations to re-create the broad flat tints of ink wash or watercolour drawings. This is achieved by etching microscopic cracks and pits into the image on a master plate, typically made of copper or zinc. Spanish artist Goya used this technique.

Artists Proof (AP) - A small group of outstanding prints for the artist's use which have been set aside from the edition prints.

Atelier - French term for "printer's workshop."

Bon a Tirer - This is a French term which translates as 'Good Pull'. It denotes that the print that has just been pulled can be used as a guide to match up the remainder of the prints that are pulled in the edition.

Brayer - In printmaking, a Brayer is a roller which is used to apply ink to printing surfaces.

Cancellation Proof - Final print made once an edition series has been finished to show that the plate has been marred/mutilated by the artist and will never again be used to make more prints of the edition.

Collograph - Printing technique in which proofs are pulled from a block on which the artwork or design is built up like a collage, creating relief.

Digital archival print - A modern term for a digital reproduction of an artwork or photograph normally on special papers or canvas. Buyers should ask the artist exactly what they mean by 'digital archival' including how lightfast and what type of inks and papers have been used. Pigment inks for instance are regarded as the most resiliant to loss of colour over time but all digital prints should be treated with respect and as normal works of art.

Drypoint - Artists working in drypoint draw the image directly onto the plate using a steel tipped 'pencil' that produces an added richness due to the burr (or shaving of metal that is turned up at the furrow). As the burrs are delicate and crush easily under the weight of the press, usually only less than 50 impressions can be made.

Edition/s - A group of identical prints that can be numbered and signed by the artist. Limited Edition: Prints that have a known number of impressions, and are usually signed and numbered by the artist. Open Edition: An unlimited number of unsigned prints.

Engraving - A type of intaglio printing in which the plate is cut with a tool called a 'graver' or 'burin,' which cuts a V-shaped trough. Engraved lines are cut so they are sharp and clean, and can be distinguished from etched lines, which are slightly irregular since they are bitten unevenly by the acid.

Etching - Printing technique in which a metal plate is first covered with acid-resistant material, then worked with an etching needle to create an intaligo image. The exposed metal is eaten away in an acid bath, creating depressed lines that are later inked for printing.

Hand Embellished - A fairly recent development, this refers to where an artist has had a series of normally digital 'limited edition' prints made from an original piece of art and then retouched the prints by hand. It is important to determine when considering a print like this that the print was 'embellished' by the actual artist who produced the original as numerous large publishers have now invaded this market with 'embellished prints' being produced in basically art factories and the 'limited edition' referring only to the country it is purchased in. 'Limited' should refer to 'worldwide'.

Giclée - See 'Iris & Giclée' below.

Hors d'Commerce Proof (HC) - Print identical to the edition print intended to be used as samples to show to dealers and galleries. These proofs may not be signed by the artist.

Intaglio - All metal plate engraving and etching processes in which the printing areas are recessed, i.e., the lines that form the design are cut into the surface. The plate is inked and then wiped so that the paper receives the ink from the incised lines and not from the surface of the plate.

Iris or Giclée - A computerized reproduction technique in which the image is generated from a digital computer file and printed by special ink jet printer (Iris or Giclée printer) using water based or more recently pigment inks. Giclée printing offers one of the highest degrees of accuracy and richness of colour available in any reproduction technique. Some of the latest pigment inks give light fastness promises of in access of 100 years or more. Occasionally the print will be 'hand enhanced' by the artist to make it even closer to the original but it is important to establish that it is the actual artist of the original that hand embellishes it. Some publishers of mass produced 'limited editions' use studios or art students to 'enhance' their editions and some even now use printing technology to add 'substance' to the print.

Lithograph - A process in which proofs are pulled on a special litho-press from a flat surface that is chemically sensitized to take ink only on the design areas and to repel it on the blank areas.

Mezzotint - A reverse-engraving procedure in which the entire surface of a copper or steel plate is heavily abraded with a tool called a 'rocker' or 'cradle.' The resulting surface, called the 'burr,' prints as a dark, velvety black. White areas are made by burnishing and scraping the burr to create smooth, depressed areas which will not take the ink. Half-tones are created by partially burnishing and scraping the burr.

Monoprint - A one-of-a-kind print made by painting on a sheet of glass or metal, and transferring the still-wet painting to a sheet of paper. Enough of the original paint remains on the plate after the transfer so that the same or different colours can be re-applied to make subsequent prints, but no two prints will be exactly alike.

Offset Litho - A special photo-mechanical technique in which the image to be printed is transferred to the negative plates and printed onto paper. Offset lithography is a very well adapted to bulk colour printing.

Print - An image created from a master wood block, stone, plate, or screen, usually on paper. Prints are referred to as multiples, because as a rule many identical or similar impressions are made from the same printing surface, the number of impressions being called an edition. See 'Edition'. A print is considered an original work of art and today is customarily signed and numbered by the artist.

Print or Original? - Prints, some sculpture, photographs and multiples are originals, but produced in quantity. The artist has chosen to work that way and all the work is approved by them. The pieces are original but not unique: the price will reflect this.

Plate signed - Prints in which the artist's signature is put onto the plate itself, and then transferred to the print through the same process as the rest of the design.

Printers Proof (PP) - Print retained by the printer as a reference. Artists often sign these prints as a gesture of appreciation

Provenance - Record of ownership for a work of art, ideally from the time it left the artist's studio to its present location, thus creating an unbroken ownership history.

Pochoir - A stencil and stencil-brush process used to make multicolour prints, for tinting black and white prints, and for colouring reproductions and book illustrations, especially fine and limited editions. Pochoir, which is the French word for stencil, is sometimes called hand colouring or hand illustration.

Remarque - A sketch made by the artist on the margin of an etched plate, often unrelated to the main composition.

Serigraph (silk-screen) - A serigraph (pronounced sear-E-graph) is produced by the silk-screen or screen-print printing process. For each desired colour, a photographically-prepared or hand-cut stencil is created indicating where the colour will be applied. Then the stencil is adhered to a silk or nylon mesh screen, and paint of that colour is forced through the screen onto the paper. The resulting process creates a luxurious, vibrant image.

Silk-screen - see 'Serigraph'

Still life art - A still-life is a picture of objects that don't move. Often vases, bowls of fruit, bottles etc. The artist sets up a still-life usually in the studio to do a 'study' of the objects. It may be a drawing or a painting. The artist looks at the objects and studies their shape, where the light falls and the shadows the objects make in relation to the other objects. Many well-known artists have created still-life studies including Cézanne, Van Gogh and Delaporte.

- Complete print documentation given to the buyer upon purchase of a print. The 'who, what, where, when, and how many' of the print.

Trial proof (TP) - Pre-cursor to a limited edition series, these initial prints are pulled so that the artist may examine, refine and perfect the prints to the desired final state. Trial proofs are generally no signed.

Wood Block Print - A relief-printing technique in which incisions made in a wood or linoleum block print white, and what is left in relief prints black.



Artist's proof - One of the first proofs in a limited edition of original sculptures. Must bear the artist's signature or mark, and, since the early 20th century, is usually numbered.

Assembly -
One of the 4 main methods a sculptor may use to achieve a desired overall form. Basically constructing or adding existing shapes, objects or materials to one another in a method other than welding to create a whole sculpture. See the other 3 main ones: carving, modelling and welding. Note: say main with a tongue in your cheek as artists are by definition always creating - not least the methods by which to create with.

Bas-relief - A low relief sculpture that projects only slightly from its 2-dimensional background.

Bronze - An alloy of copper and tin, sometimes containing small amounts of other elements in varying proportions such as zinc and phosphorus. Harder and more durable than brass and used extensively since antiquity for casting sculpture. Bronze alloys vary in colour from silvery hues to rich, coppery red. Different countries have different standards for the mix - and mixes also may vary from one foundry to another. In its molten form, bronze is poured into the main channel or sprue of an investment casing surrounding a sculpture to produce the final cast piece of artwork.

Carving - A subtractive method of sculpture which consists of removing wood or stone from a single block.

Casting - Reproducing in plaster, bronze, or plastic, an original piece of sculpture made of clay, wax, or similar material.

Foundry - The building or place where the casting of bronze takes place by the lost wax, sand casting or ceramic shell processes.

Lost wax - A method of creating a wax mold of a sculpture and then heating the mold to melt out the wax and replace it with a molten metal or plastic

Marquette - In sculpture, a small model in wax or clay, made as a preliminary sketch, presented to the client for approval of the proposed work, or for entry in a competition. The Italian equivalent of the term is bozzetto, meaning small sketch




Ceramic -  Basically any object made of clay and fired. Used to describe the shaping, finishing and firing of clay.

Firing - To harden clay, you have to heat it at high temperatures which fuses the clay particles.

Bisque - When clay has its first firing in a kiln, it is called bisque ware. At this point, the clay has changed composition and can no longer have water added to it and turned back into a useable material.

Coil method in clay - As one of the oldest methods used in the formation of pottery, long strands of clay are laid on top of one another, joined by blending the coils together.

Crackle glaze - Tiny cracks in the glaze to decorate. Often rubbed in with coloring material.

Crazing - Crazing is the fine cracks that occur on the glaze.

Earthenware - This type of clay needs to be glazed, it is porous and not waterproof. Earthenware is a low-fire clay

Kiln - Kilns can be electric, of natural gas, wood, coal, fuel oil or propane. The kiln is the furnace used to fire ceramics or metal.

Mosaic - An art form in which small pieces of tile, glass, or stone are fitted together and embedded into a background to create a pattern or image.

Porcelain - Porcelain is a combination of kaolin, silica and feldspar. You can work with porcelain as you would clay, but when you fire it correctly, the result will be similar to that of glass.

Raku - This method of firing pottery results in irregular surfaces and colours. The pottery is removed when it is red hot. It is then placed in a bed of combustible materials and covered.

Reduction - Firing clay with an inadequate amount of oxygen.

Slab built - Clay slabs are cut into shape, and joined together with scoring and wet clay called slip.

Slip - A liquid form of clay. Slip is used to fill in pores, and even out the colour. Slip is used to join clay.

Stoneware - Sturdier then earthenware, stoneware is waterproof even without being glazed.

Terra cotta - Commonly used for ceramic sculpture, it is a brownish-orange earthenware clay.

Wheel Thrown - Comes from an English term meaning 'spin'. The clay is placed on the potters wheel and the piece is formed while the clay spins on the wheel.



llustration - Illustration can usually be defined as art that has been initially produced to a brief for commercial reproduction such as advertising or editorial (books, newspapers etc.) usage. The line between an illustrator and an 'artist' is often blurred and many of todays most respected artists have evolved via illustration. Some in fact have two distinct diciplines and provide both illustration and fine art with totally different styles.



Indian ink

Animation drawing - Refers to an original, one-of-a-kind production drawings created by an animator from which the cels are later created.

Animation Cel - A sheet of clear acetate or nitrate which is hand-painted and then placed over a background and photographed. The outline of the character (hand-painted or xeroxed) is applied to the front of the cel. The colours are hand-painted onto the back of the cel.

Serigraph Cel (Sericel) - A non-production silk-screened cel similar to a limited edition, but no work is done by hand. Often produced in editions of 5000.

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Sophie AHMAD | Alan ALDRIDGE | Unnamed/Unknown Artist | Karol BAK | Guy CAMBIER | Neil CANNING | Gabriele CAPPELLI | Dave CUTLER | Alan DAVIE | Mark DEMSTEADER | Dilys FINLAY-STEPHENS | William Banks FORTESCUE | Anthony FROST | James FRYER | Chris GOLLON | Kevin HAUFF | Alex HOWITT | Peter HOWSON | John HOYLAND | Albert IRVIN | Amy JUDD | Ivan KOCHKAREV | Jerzy KOLACZ | Martin LEMAN | Laura LIAN | Josip LIZATOVIC | Enrico LOMBARDI | Julia MACMILLAN | MIZZY | Katerina NEVOLINA | Rafal OLBINSKI | Ray RICHARDSON | Alexander SELIVANOV | Jos VAN UIJTREGT | Maurice VERRIER | Penny WARDEN | Tom YOUNG