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Art History

Glossary and Terms

History >> Art History

Abstract Art - Art in which there is no subject. The art is made up of only shapes and colors.

Baroque - A period of art starting around 1600 where pictures became more dramatic and showed the subject in motion.

Cubism - An art form developed by Pablo Picasso and Georges Braque. In cubism the artist would break up the subject into pieces and then rebuild it from different angles.

Expressionism - An art form from the early 1900s where the artist painted primarily about emotion.

Fauvism - An art movement where the artists applied lots of bright colors regardless of the actual color of the subject. The word "fauves" means "wild beasts".

Futurism - An Italian art movement from the early 20th century that emphasized themes such as technology, speed, and youth.

History Painting - A type of painting that used subjects from history.

Impressionism - A major art movement in Paris, France from the 1860s. A group of artists rebelled against the established art society and began to paint trying to capture the light and color of the present moment. They became known as Impressionists.

Mannerism - A style of art from the end of the Renaissance and before Baroque. It was known for its intelligent, but artificial qualities.

Nabis - A group of French artists in the late 1800s who wanted to change the way art was approached. The word "nabis" meant "prophets".

Neo-classicism - A serious approach to art and architecture where classical models from the Greeks and the Romans were used.

Minimalism - An art movement from the 1960s and 1970s where the artists tried to only paint the very essence of the subject.

Modern Art - Generally refers to art from the 1860s to the 1970s.

Op Art - Art that uses optical illusion to trick the eye.

Pointillism - A method of painting using only small dots of pure color. Also called Divisionism.

Pop Art - An art movement from the 1950s where commercial products such as advertisements, labels, celebrities, and comic books were used in art.

Post-Impressionism - The style or movement of painting that came after Impressionism.

Pre-Raphaelites - A group of English artists during the mid-1800s who studied and emulated the art of the Renaissance before the artist Raphael.

Renaissance - A major artistic and cultural movement that began in Italy in the 1400s and ran through the 1700s. It signaled the end to the Middle Ages.

Realism - Art that imitates the real world exactly as the artist sees it.

Romanticism - A period of art from the early 1800s. It began to use looser brush strokes and expressed the emotions of the subjects, such as spirituality, mystery, revolution, and poetic beauty.

Rococo - A style of art from the 1700s mostly associated with architecture and the later part of the Baroque period. It was considered lighthearted and uplifting.

The Salon - The official art exhibition taking place each year in France.

Surrealism - Art that tries to capture the thoughts of the subconscious mind and dreams.

Symbolism - Art that means something beyond the actual subject that is sculpted or painted.

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Works Cited

History >> Art History

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