Originally a derogatory term (Les Fauves) meaning "wild beasts",
used of a group of painters who exhibited at the Salon d' Automne in Paris
in 1905, including Matisse.
fin de Siecle
Late 19th-century style of Art Nouveau, also associated with the Symbolist
and Decadent movements.
Flemish Painting School
Realistic style of oil on panel painting.
Name of an international art movement, established in 1962, which aimed
to unite Europe's avant-garde. It had similarities with the anti-art philosophy
There were two Schools; the First, under Francis I c.1528-58 was fundamentally
Mannerist, directly influenced by expatriate Italian masters. The Second,
under Henry IV (1589-1610) was more mediocre. Occasionally confused with
19th century Barbizon school of landscape art, near Fontainebleau.
Its Golden Age was the 19th century and the early 20th century.
Italian artistic movement founded in 1909 by Filippo Marinetti, which
exalted the modern world of machinery, speed, and violence.
Loose and somewhat inaccurate term for abstract art in which the image
is composed of non-representational geometric shapes. It has been used
of various artists and movements, including the Suprematists, Piet Mondrian,
and Ben Nicholson.
General term describing the styles of art associated with the reigns of
King George I, II, II and IV in Britain (1714-1830), notably in architecture,
silver, furniture, and silver. Its unifying atrribute is a certain classical
restraint and harmony.
General expressionist trend in Germany, exemplified by artist groups like
Der Blaue Reiter (1909-14, Munich) led by Wassily Kandinsky (1844-1944)
and Franz Marc (1880-1916); Die Brucke (1905-13, Dresden) founded
by Karl Schmidt-Rottluff (1884-1976) and Ernst Ludwig Kirchner (1880-1938);
and Die Neue Sachlichkeit (1920s, Mannheim and elsewhere) whose
famous members included Otto Dix (1891-1969), George Grosz (1893-1959)
and Max Beckmann (1884-1950).
Refers to artistic development in Germany during the period (c.1430-1580),
exemplified by Albrecht Durer, Matthias Grunewald, Hans Holbein and Tilman
Riemenschneider, among others.
Glasgow School of Painting
Barbizon-influenced group of Post-Impressionists. Also included C.R.Mackintosh's
The last period of medieval art and architecture. Early Gothic usually
refers to the period 1140-1200; High Gothic c.1200-50; late Gothic from
1250. "Gothic" was used in the Renaissance as a pejorative adjective
for medieval architecture. See also: Gothic
Sculpture. During the 19th century, a Gothic Revival movement
appeared, notably in British and American architecture: US practitioners
included Richard Upjohn
(1802-78) and James Renwick
Graffiti Art (1970s onwards)
Also referred to as "Writing", "Spraycan Art" and
"Aerosol Art", Graffiti is a movement or style of art associated
with hip-hop, a cultural movement which sprang up in various American
cities, especially on New York subway trains, during the 1970s and 1980s.
Later it spread to Europe and Japan and eventually crossed over from the
street into the gallery. Its most famous exemplar was Jean-Michel Basquiat.
Italian group founded in Rome by Alberto Burri, Ettore Colla, Giuseppe
Capogrossi and Mario Ballocco, in response to the disagreeably decorative
quality of abstract art at the time. In their initial manifesto they proclaimed
a return to fundamentals, notably by renouncing three-dimensional forms,
restricting colour to its simplest, and by evoking elemental images. Began
and ended during 1951.
Gutai (concrete) (1954-72)
The Gutai Bijutsu Kyokai (Gutai Art Association), a Japanese avant-garde
group, was founded in 1954 in Osaka by Yoshihara Jiro, Kanayma Akira,
Murakami Saburo, Shiraga Kazuo, and Shimamoto Shozo. Held a number of
public exhibitions in 1955 and 1956, with works prefiguring later Happenings
and Performance and Conceptual art. According to art historian Yve-Alain
Bois, the group's activities constituted one of the most important moments
of post-war Japanese culture.
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Hard edge painting
Term coined in 1959 to describe abstract (but not geometric) painting,
using large, flat areas of colour with precise edges.
An African-American artistic movement centered in the Harlem borough of
New York City, and originally known as the New Negro Movement, it had
a profound influence throughout the United States. Influential members
were William H. Johnson, Lois Mailou Jones and the sculptor and printmaker
Sargent Claude Johnson, as well as Jacob Lawrence, Archibald Motley and
A 19th century group of Melbourne-based painters associated with Australian
Style of fine art practised in Italy, France, Spain between 1490 and 1530.
See also: Renaissance
in Rome, under under Pope Sixtus IV (1471-84), Pope Julius II (1503-13),
Pope Leo X (1513-21), and Pope Paul III (1534-45). Masterpieces of High
Renaissance painting includes the fresco works in the Sistine Chapel
and the decoration of the Raphael Rooms.
History of Art Timeline
Chronology, dates and events in the evolution of visual art.
River School of landscape painting
Group of American landscape painters, working from 1825 to 1875. Includes
Thomas Doughty, Thomas Cole, Asher B. Durand, J. F. Kensett, Henry Inman,
Jasper Cropsey, and Frederick E. Church.
A cultural and philosophical movement of the Italian Renaissance, focusing
on the capabilities of human beings as opposed to the abstract concepts
and problems of science or theology.
Also known as Superrealism or Photorealism, it describes a form of 1970s
hyperrealistic sculpture and painting as exemplified by Chuck Close, Richard
Estes, Audrey Flack, and Ralph Goings.
19th-century French art movement, from 1874. Impressionist painters like
Pissarro, Monet, Renoir, and Sisley, were linked by their common interest
in capturing immediate visual impressions, and an emphasis on light and
colour; hence Impressionist; Impressionistic.
The name of a radical association of young avant-garde painters and sculptors
within the Institute of Contemporary Arts (ICA) in London, who was responsible
for the dissemination of the basic tenets of British Pop art during the
late 1950s. Leading participants included Richard Hamilton, Nigel Henderson,
Eduardo Paolozzi and William Turnbull, as well as critics Lawrence Alloway
and Rayner Banham, and the architects Colin St John Wilson, and Alison
and Peter Smithson.
A style of painting, sculpture and decorative art that spread across western
Europe during the period 1375-1450. Acted as a bridge between Gothic and
Renaissance art. It was greatly stimulated by the growing cultural rivalry
of the European royal courts. See also International
Form of modern architecture, initiated by Walter Gropius, developed by
Mies van der Rohe, Skidmore, Owings & Merrill and others.
French genre painting of domestic, intimate interiors, such as the work
of Pierre Bonnard and Edouard Vuillard; hence intimiste.
Styles (20th Century)
Nationalist versus Internationalist.
Refers to a general category of post-7th century visual art, created by
artists in territory occupied by the cultures of Islam. It encompasses
architecture, architectural decoration, pottery, faience mosaics, lustre-ware,
relief sculpture, wood and ivory carving, drawing, painting, calligraphy,
manuscript illumination, textile design, metalwork, goldsmithery, gemstone
carving, and other art forms.
General artistic idiom associated with the culture of the reign of James
I (reigned 1603-25) notably in theatre as well as painting. Leading exemplars
include the eminent Elizabethan miniaturist Nicholas Hilliard and the
Dutch born artists Paul Van Somer and Daniel Mytens the Elder.
The name for Art Nouveau-type styles in Germany, popularized by the Munich
A sub-genre of "found art", pioneered by Duchamp, Picasso, Schwitters
and Rauschenberg, and characterized by the use of banal, everyday materials.
Kitchen Sink art
Term originally used as the title of an article by David Sylvester in
the journal Encounter refering to the work of the realist artists known
as the Beaux Arts Quartet, John Bratby, Derrick Greaves, Edward Middleditch
and Jack Smith.
Works which incorporate movement or the appearance of movement (eg. mobiles).
Knave of Diamonds
Russian artists' exhibition society (1910-17) that promoted avant-garde
art from Russia and Europe.
Tene Celtic Culture
Style of Celtic Metalwork art and abstract designwork. See also Hallstatt
Group of English artists who were influenced by Post-Impressionism, and
who exhibited together from 1913.
Term applied to American landscape painters of the Hudson River School
from about 1830-70, as many of their paintings were dominated by intense,
dramatic light effects. A form of Luminism underlies Whistler's 'Nocturnes'.
Term coined by the French painter George's Mathieu in 1947 to describe
a more decorative, painterly style of Art Informel, the postwar European
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Term invented by German photographer, art historian and art critic Franz
Roh to describe late 19th early 20th realist paintings with fantasy or
Artistic style originating in Italy c.1520-90 that tends to employ distortion
of figures, and emphasize an emotional content. See also: Mannerist
Realist/Impressionist art group active in Florence c.1855-70.
Family (Florence Renaissance)
Arguably the most influential Italian family of art patrons. Had a huge
impact on the development of painting and sculpture in 15th century Florence.
"Medieval" is an imprecise term describing the period of European
history from the fall of the Roman Empire in the West (c.450 CE) to the
onset of the Renaissance (c.1400). Medieval art was mostly architectural
or decorative - sculpture, mosaic illuminated gospel texts, tapestry.
Decorative art exemplified by works from the Carolingian court of King
The term "Medieval sculpture" essentially describes the era
400-1000. It was followed by Romanesque sculpture. See also Medieval
(It. Pittura Metafisica)
Movement of c.1915-18 associated with the painter Giorgio de Chirico;
partly a reaction against Futurism.
Term applied to the resurgence of large-size public mural painting in
Mexico during the 1920s and 1930s, as practised by the left-wing artists
Diego Rivera, Jose Clemente Orozco, and David Alfaro Siqueiros.
A non-representational style of painting, sculpture and architecture in
the late 1960s, which was severely restricted in its use of visual elements
and limited itself to simple geometric shapes or masses.
Modern Art Movements
Fine art styles from roughly 1850 to 1960s.
An umbrella term covering a style of painting and sculpture that emerged
under Courbet and Millet during mid-19th century France, and which continues
to this day. Encompasses early 20th century styles like Post-Impressionist
art, the Neue Sachlichkeit movement and Magic Realism. In America it was
exemplified by the Ashcan School, American Regionalism, and the works
of Edward Hopper. In Britain, modern realist schools included the Euston
Road and the British Kitchen Sink artists. Also includes individuals like
Balthus, Freud, the portraiture of Hockney, Gwen John, Morandi, and Spencer.
Withdrawal in 1892 of German artists in Munich from the traditional institutions;
it remained relatively conservative, and was followed by the Vienna Secession
(1897) and the Berlin Secession (1908).
Les Nabis (French)
Group of French artists working from c.1892 to 1899, influenced by Gauguin
in their use of colour and lightly exotic decorative effects. They included
Pierre Bonnard, Jean-Edouard Vuillard, Felix Vallotton and Paul Serusier.
Group of German painters, led by Friedrich Overbeck, working in Rome in
the early 19th century; inspired by Northern art of the 15th and early
The late 18th-century European style, lasting from c.1770 to 1830, which
reacted against the worst excesses of the Baroque and Rococo, reviving
the Antique. It implies a return to classical sources which imposed restraint
and simplicity on painting and architecture.
Term often used to describe works by Robert Rauschenberg and Jasper Johns
in New York in the late 1950s because of their use of collage, assemblage
and found materials, and their apparent anti-art agenda.
1980s revival of figurative painting. Known as Neue Wilden in Germany,
Figuration Libre in France, Transavantguardia in Italy,
Bad Painting in America.
The development of Impressionism through Georges Seurat's scientific analysis
and treatment of colour; see Divisionism; Pointillism.
A rigid Dutch style of Abstraction, based on rectangles, horizontal and
vertical lines founded by Piet Mondrian in the early 1920s.
Broad term for several 20th-century European art movements that draw on
mystical, dreamlike subjects; expressive, emotional forms; and Surrealism.
Refers to artistic development in Flanders and Holland in the period (c.1430-1580),
exemplified by Jan Van Eyck, Roger Van Der Weyden, Hieronymus Bosch and
Pieter Bruegel the Elder.
Neue Kunstlervereinigung (Ger. "New Artists' Association")
Founded in Munich in 1909 with Wassily Kandinsky as president, and influenced
by the Munich Jugendstil and Fauvism. Kandinsky and Franz Marc later formed
the Blaue Reiter group.
Die Neue Sachlichkeit
German modern realist movement of the 1920s founded by Otto Dix and George
Grosz, who vividly depicted the corruption and hedonism in Germany during
the 1920s. See: German Expressionism.
The Bauhaus founded in Chicago by Laszlo Moholy-Nagy, which later became
the Institute of Design.
New English Art Club
Antiacademic, pro-Impressionist art club founded in 1886. Its founder
members included Walter Sickert and Wilson Steer.
Led by Stanhope Alexander Forbes and Frank Bramley, the artists who settled
in the West Cornish town of Newlyn from the early 1880s pursued the Impressionist
derived pleinairism doctrine of working directly from nature.
New Realism (or Nouveau Realisme)
Term coined in 1960 by the French critic Pierre Restany for art derived
partly from Dada and Surrealism, which reacted against more abstract work,
especially by using industrial and everyday objects to make junk art or
New Spirit Painting
Synonymous with Neo-Expressionism and its sub-cultures of Neue Wilden
and Transavanguardia, its name being derived from the 1981 Royal Academy
Exhibition "A New Spirit in Painting", the movement promoted
certain styles of contemporary British expressionism. Participants included
the American painters David Salle and Eric Fischl, as well as British
painters Paula Rego, Stephen McKenna, Stephen Campbell and the abstract
Irish-American painter Sean Scully.
New York School
The core of Abstract Expressionism in New York in the 1940s and early
1950s including Jackson Pollock, Willem de Kooning, and Mark Rothko.
Western art from Northern Europe (eg. Flanders, Holland, Germany, Britain)
of the period c 1420-1600.
Important English school of landscape painting, dating from 1803, led
by John Crome and John Sell Cotman.
New Subjectivity (Nouvelle Subjectivité)
Name applied by the French curator and art historian Jean Clair, to a
1976 international art show at the Musée National d'Art Moderne
at the Pompidou Centre in Paris. The exhibition showcased works by American,
British and European artists who rejected the dominant and highly fashionable
styles of abstraction and conceptualism, preferring a return to depicting
the reality of things. Leading practitioners included David Hockney, R
B Kitaj, Samuel Buri, Christian Zeimert, Michel Parre and Sam Szafran.
Il Novecento Italiano
Italian artist group founded in 1922 by Funi, Sironi, Carra and others,
with the aim of promoting large format history painting in the classical
manner. Launched in 1923 in Milan, the group quickly split and reformed,
staging its first group show in Milan in 1926.
A style of non-geometric form of abstract art practised by a group of
British artists in the early 1930s, notably in the 1934 show entitled
Objective Abstraction staged at the Zwemmer Gallery in London, whose participants
included Graham Bell, William Coldstream, Rodrigo Moynihan, and Geoffrey
Oil Painters of Ireland
Artist group dedicated to representational oils.