Art history terms

Polychrome term used to describe painting or painted decoration on the surface of sculpture polytypic An altarpiece or devotional work of art made of several panels Joined together, often hinged so that its wings can be opened and closed as appropriate during Christian religious worship. Post and lintel a basic type of architecture in which upright elements (posts) support a horizontal member (lintel). With this type of construction, the distance between the supports is determined by the weight and strength of the lintel. Elis a body part or object that belonged to, was touched by, or otherwise associated with a holy figure. Such objects were thought to have inherent powers of healing and protection. Relief sculpture form of sculpture in which the ornaments or figures are attached to a background, from which they stand out to a greater or lesser degree (this is referred to as “high relief” or “low relief”). It is commonly used for architectural decoration, and also for pictorial narration. Reliquary a container for storing or displaying sacred relics such as the (alleged) bones of saints, pieces of the Cross on which Christ was crucified.

Often constructed from precious materials meant to emphasize the holiness of the relics themselves. Rib vaulting style of vault in which projecting surface arches, known as ribs, are raised along the intersections of segments of the vault. Ribs may provide architectural support as well as decoration to the vault’s surface. Sculpture in the round form of sculpture in which a figure or subject is carved on all sides, usually designed to be appreciated such that you could walk around the work (or turn it in your hand) and view it from all angles.

Sides Sapient (Throne of Wisdom) a devotional title for the Virgin Mary as well as a category of iconic image. In representations of the Throne of Wisdom, Mary is seated frontally on a throne with he Christ Child on her lap, emphasizing Mary in her role as the mother of Christ and as the vessel of Chrism’s incarnation on earth. Synthetic/synthetics the combination of multiple different styles or practices, and the bringing together of discrete traditions or schools of thought into an inclusive whole (as, for example, how Roman art and architecture borrowed from both the ancient Greeks and Egyptians). Reformism the shallow arched gallery within a church wall, Just below the clerestory. Triptych a format most often used for an altarpiece or devotional work of art, comprised of three panels Joined together. Often hinged, it is made up of a central panel and wings on either side. Typology the linking of figures and symbols across Christian history, often used as a structuring component in the design of Christian narrative images. Connections are most often made between stories or figures from the Old Testament and those in the New Testament (such as linking Adam to Christ and Eve to the Virgin Mary).

Trinity in Christian doctrine, the unity to Father, Son, and Holy Spirit as three individuals in one Godhead. Often resulted in the emphasis on the number three in Christian art and architecture. Votive gift An object offered to a deity in a sacred place for religious purposes. In the Catholic Church, votive gifts were promised by individuals when petitioning aid or a special request from God, and presented in a church or cult side as sign of gratitude for the fulfillment of the vow. Touch a type of print made by carving out a design on a wooden block and applying ink to the raised surfaces that remain. A relief technique where the negative space is carved away. Because of the material, it is more difficult to achieve fine lines and details in a woodcut than in an engraving, but woodcut blocks were more durable Han the copper plates used for engraving, and thus woodcuts were often used for book illustrations because it is possible to create a higher number of impressions (I. . Copies). Woodcuts could also be purchased inexpensively and were often hand- colored by their owners, and even pasted on the wall as cheap substitutes for paintings. Gujarat a high, pyramidal, tower found in temple complexes in ancient Mesopotamia and Assyria, built from mud and bricks, which served as a site of religious worship, often commissioned by individual rulers in a particular region as a visual demonstration of their power and link to the divine.

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