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subject matter

the specific idea of artwork, "what"


the total appearance and organization of the physical and formal qualities of an artwork, "how"

elements (formal)

that which makes up an artwork. line, value and light, color, shape, space, texture, volume and mass, time, and motion

medium, media

traditional and nontraditional materials used to make art, such as charcoal, paint, clay, bronze, video, or computers


a branch of western philosophies that is concerned with the meaning of beauty


a category of art that requires special manual skills and is often functional in origin


repeated elements that resemble each other, but are not exactly alike


visual imagery in art that does not copy reality

non objective

artwork that has no imagery that resembles the natural world

trompe l'oeil

fool the eye


the placing of lines side by side to create values and tones

subtractive method (sculpture)

a technique in which a sculptural material is carved away to produce a form


sculptures made from various found objects or prefabricated parts that are put together

performance art

influenced by the "happening," performance art consists of live action events staged as artworks


the relationship of lights and darks in a composition

primary colors

in any medium, those colors that, when mixed, produce the largest range of new colors. red, blue, yellow

secondary colors

colors that result when any two primary colors are mixed in a particular medium


a structure in architecture that extends or protrudes horizontally beyond its support

picture plane

the flat, 2-D surface of a drawing, a print, or a painting

complimentary colors

hues that are located directly opposite each other on the color wheel

camera obscura

image that gets flipped upside down. first precursor to the camera

geometric shapes

shapes based on mathematical concepts, such as the circle, square, or rectangle

analogous colors

colors that are close to each other on the color wheel


a photographic process invented in the nineteenth century for fixing an image on a silver coated metal plate

applied art

art that is created for use

picture frame

outside edge of picture plane


a curved structure made of stone or brick that supports weight over an opening


a line of arches placed side by side on piers or columns that may be freestanding or attached to a wall


wedge shaped stone used to build an arch or a vault

alienated eye

looking at things form a diff perspective

decorative (space)

pictorial space in a 2-D work that remains true to the picture plane and shows very little depth

barrel vault

a single arch extended in depth from front to back, forming a tunnel like structure

groin vault

formed with two barrel vaults positioned at a 90-degree angles so as to cross or intersect one another

ribbed vault

variation of the groin vaulting system in which arches diagonally cross over the groin vault forming skeletal ribs

contour line

the outline of a shape

bas relief

sculpture that is partly projecting from a flat surface, when the sculptural form is at least half round of less


in drawing, the use of various tones to create the illusion of volume


an art pieve usually of mixed media that is designed for a specific space


a mass of brick or stone that supports a wall or an arch

flying buttress

a buttress placed some distance from the structure it is supporting and it is connected to the main structure with an arch

simulated texture

texture rendered in a composition to look like the actual or natural texture

actual texture

surface qualities that exist in reality and can be felt

achromatic value

without color, consisting old of grays

chromatic value

brightness of dullness of a hue, intensity


the addition of black to a hue


the creating of lines or areas on glass or a metal plate, using acid that eats into the exposed surface but leaves coated, protected areas unchanged

silk screen

a printmaking technique in which ink is applied to a stencil that has been temporarily adhered to a trenched cloth

warm colors

generally reds, oranges, and yellows

cool colors

generally blues, greens, and purples

optical mixing

placing two colors in small dots side by side causing the eyes to mix the colors


a period of western art, primarily in the 20th century, during which innovation and self critical practice were emphasized

split compliment

colors on either side of a colors compliment

greek orders

specifically designed columns with standardized proportions & ornamentation


look at other art relating to Roman modernism


taking pictures that look like paintings

ready made

taking objects and putting them together to form art


photos mass produced out of tin

simultaneous contrast

two colors side by side and being able to see the differences

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