The process of leaving out of consideration one or more properties of a complex
object so as to attend to others
A sketchy, imperfect or faint representation
Eggwhite. Used on glass as a medium for light-sensitive emulsions to make finely
detailed negatives albumen positive prints are made on paper coated with
eggwhite and salt solution and sensitized with silver nitrite solution. The
print is made by exposure to sunlight through a negative.
A painted or carved screen placed above and behind an altar or communion table
A print produced by the same technique as an etching, except that the areas
between the etched lines are covered with a powdered resin that protects
the surface from the biting process of the acid bath. The granular appearance
that results in the print aims at approximating the effects and gray tonalities
of a watercolor drawing.
Style of art characterized by repetitive, ornamental and highly finished, curvilinear
and geometric designs, (1920's-1930').
An Artist's Proof is one outside the regular edition, but printed at the same
time or after the regular edition from the same plates without changes. By
custom, the artist retains the A/Ps for his personal use or sale. Typically,
10% of the edition total is designated as A/P, or in the case of a small edition,
five graphics are usually so designated.
A style of decoration and architecture emphasizing fluid, biomorphic lines
and swirling motifs.
French term for "printer's workshop."
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
An elaborate ornamentation in decorative art & architecture that flourished
in Europe in the 17th century
Bon a Tirer (B.A.T.)
When the artist is satisfied with the graphic from the finished plate, he works
with his printer to pull one perfect graphic and it is marked "Bon a
Tirer," meaning "good to pull." The printer then compares
each graphic in the edition with the BAT before submitting the graphic to
the artist for approval and signature. There is typically one BAT which becomes
the property of the printer or workshop printing the edition.
Printing using an uninked plate to produce the subtle embossed texture of a
white-on-white image, highlighted by the shadow of the relief image on the
uninked paper. This technique is used in many Japanese prints.
An alloy of copper and tin, sometimes containing small proportions of other
elements such as zinc or phosphorus. It is stronger, harder, and more durable
than brass, and has been used most extensively since antiquity for cast sculpture.
Bronze alloys vary in color from a silvery hue to a rich, coppery red. U.S.
standard bronze is composed of 90% copper, 7% tin, and 3% zinc.
A mounted photographic print measuring 4 1/2 inches by 2 1/2 inches popular
in the late 19th century, usually as a portrait.
An artist who creates sculpture.
The art making of objects of clay and firing them in a kiln. Wares of earthenware
and porcelain, as well as sculpture are made by ceramists. Enamel is also
a ceramic technique. Ceramic materials may be decorated with slip, engobe,
or glaze, applied by a number of techniques, including resist, mishima, and
sanggam. Pots made be made by the coil, slab, or some other manual technique,
or on a potter's wheel.
Certifies the authenticity
Certifies the authenticity of an individual piece in an edition and states
the current market value.
Impure carbon prepared from vegetable or animal substances. Finely prepared
charcoal in small sticks used as a drawing implement.
In drawing, painting, and the graphic arts, the rendering of forms through
a balanced contrast between light and dark areas. The technique which was
introduced during the Renaissance, is effective in creating an illusion of
depth and space around the principal figures in a composition. Leonardo Da
Vinci and Rembrandt were painters who excelled in the use of this technique.
(sheen coal lay) Process of taking thin paper, like rice paper, dampened with
water and glue, placed on another paper, then placed in the etching press,
before the etching is done.
Also called dry stamp or seal. A mark impressed on a print by a workshop or
a printer. Some artists and publishers also use their own chop to identify
A continuous tone reproduction with hand drawn touch colors, using both serigraphy
" One who works with color". An artist craftsman who separates paintings
or drawings into individual colors, used to print.
Style with emphasis on symmetry, proportion and harmony of line and form.
A print that uses a build-up of applied surfaces, such as glue, mat board,
cloth, sand, etc. It is then inked by hand and printed on an intaglio press.
Also called photo gelatin print or heliotype, a reproduction process using
gelatin-coated glass or metal plate that produces a continuous tone print.
To order an original work of art from the artist
Using materials and techniques in the framing process to ensure framing do
not damage artwork. Hinging the artwork instead of mounting it, using high-quality
acid-free boards and mats, using no staining paste, and glazing with conservation
glass or acrylic are generally accepted procedures used to help preserve
artwork. The same procedures are sometimes referred to as "preservation
An engraving consisting of a smooth plate of copper that has been etched or
Network of small cracks in painted or varnished surface of an old painting.
Shading consisting of multiple crossing lines
Invented in 1838, this was the first practical photographic process, in which
an image is formed on a copper plate coated with highly polished silver.
Following exposure, the image is developed in mercury vapor, resulting in
a unique image on metal that cannot be used as a negative for replication.
The natural rough edge on a sheet of paper in hand made paper.
(Latin, delineavit) He(she) drew it. Generally inscribed next to the artist's
(dip-tic) Two paneled altarpiece, carving or painting.
Something shown to the public; a visual representation of something
To twist and press out of shape
A certificate that identifies techniques and materials used to produce an edition,
as well as total number of prints plus proofs, signed by both printer and
The process of using dry adhesive substances to mount paper artwork or photographs
to a board, using high heat and a dry mount press.
A high quality color photographic printing technique involving the transfer
of dyes from three separately prepared images onto a single sheet of paper.
(French, epreuve d' artist) an artist's proof.
A representation of Jesus wearing a crown of thorns
Number of prints made from an original. This number generally does not include
any artist proofs or any special editions.
When painting, used upon a ground of metal, porcelain, the colors afterward
being fixed by fire.
Painting done with pigment mixed with beeswax and blended with heat.
Making engraved or etched plates and printing designs from them
Technique where a soft ground is laid on a copper or tin metal plate, and using
a sharp etching tool, the artist draws through the ground, exposing the metal
plate. The lines of exposed metal are then "bitten" in an acid
bath. The strength of the acid and the length of time the plate is bathed
determines the depth of the lines. After the ground is removed the artist
inks the plate, making sure that the etched lines are filled with ink. The
excess ink is wiped away, the plate placed, face up on the press and the
paper face down. The pressure of the heavy rollers on the press is so great
it leaves the impression of the plate on the paper and pushes the ink onto
Exc or Imp
(Latin, exudit) He(she) executed it. The meaning is synonymous with he(she)
An art movement launched in 1905 with work characteristic of bright, non-natural
colors and simple forms. This influenced Impressionists.
A thin moulding used as an accent in framing inside another moulding, liner
The products of human creativity; works of art collectively
Genre of art of unknown origin that reflects traditional values of a society.
The art of painting on freshly spread plaster before it dries, or in any manner.
In reference to ink it means the pigment is not stable or will fade at a fast
rate. Fugitive pigments are synthetic based and made of cheap components.
Style of glorifying modern technology, speed and the machine age, (Italy, early
A high-quality, black-and-white photographic printing technique in which a
natural protein is used as a transparent medium to hold light-sensitive silver
halide crystals in suspension, binding them to the printing paper or film,
yet allowing penetration of processing solutions.
(zhan-re) Realistic depiction of scenes from everyday domestic life. Also,
a type or class like a certain "genre" of painting.
Plaster of Paris used as white primer for painting surface, esp. canvas.
(Zhee-clay) Computer controlled, fine art print making process. Similar to
the look of a serigraph but no screens are used. It uses a very fine spray
of ink, 15 microns in size, about 4 times smaller than a human hair. The microscopic
jet-stream is controlled by a crystal frequency. The print is then coated with
up to 15 layers of waterproof U.V. varnishes.
A glossy finish on a surface, to varnish
Very thin leaves of real gold that are burnished onto a wood frame that has
been coated with several layers of other material in preparation. The process
is expensive because of the use of precious metal.
Style emphasizing Christian imagery, brilliant color and strong verticality
(gwash) Opaque watercolor paint bound with gum.
Chiaroscuro painting in shades of gray imitating the effect of relief
The artist style of early 16th century painting in Florence and Rome ; characterized
by technical mastery, heroic composition and humanistic content.
Hors de Commerce
Also known as HC prints. Prints not equal in quality to the edition that may
have minor flaws. These usually aren't signed and are canceled in some way,
such as a hole in the corner or a stamp indicating they are not for sale.
These are used by sales people to show potential clients.
Color or shade of a color
The style of a particular artist, school or movement
A general term used for a drawing or an original work of art
A visual representation of an object, scene or person produced on a surface.
The size of the work reproduced on a print, not the overall paper size.
Thick application of paint that forms an opaque relief surface, so that brush
or palette knife marks are visible.
A print on paper from a wood block, metal plate, linoleum, etc.
An art movement founded in France in the last 3rd of the 19th century. The
artist's sought to break up light into its component colors and render its
emphemeral play on various objects. The artist's vision was intensely centered
on light and the way it transforms the visible world The short brush-strokes
of bright color are chosen to represent light which is broken down into its
spectrum components and re-combined by the eyes into another color when viewed
at a distance.
Inc. or Sculp
(Latin, incidit) He(she) cut it or carved it. These abbreviations refer to
the individuals who engraved the master plate.
Derived from the Italian, "cut in", or engrave. It stands for any
or several print making methods -- engraving, etching, drypoint, aquatint,
soft-ground etching or mezzotint. These all have this in common: The areas
which print on the paper have been cut, scratched or chemically bitten.
Inv. or Invent
(Latin, invenit). He(she) designed it. Generally inscribed next to the artist's
A painting depicting an expanse of natural scenery
A varnish consisting of a solution of shella in alcohol, often used for varnishing
The process of putting designs or writing, with a greasy material, on a stone,
and of producing printed impression there from. The original painting is
photographed and the image is burned into four plates for a full color printing
process. The ink comes from a roller on a printing press. High quality lithographs
use a very fine dot screen on acid free paper with fade resistant inks.
In art, a public declaration or exposition in print of the theories and directions
of a movement. The manifestos issued by various individual artists or groups
of artists, in the first half of the twentieth century served to reveal their
motivations and raisons d‚etre and stimulated support for or reactions
A deliberate simulation or exaggerated display.
In sculpture, a small model in wax or clay, made as a preliminary sketch, presented
to a client for his approval of the proposed work, or entered in a competition
for a prize or scholarship. The Italian equivalent of the term is bozzetto,
meaning small sketch.
A printer who has studied and practiced all processes, including serigraphy,
lithography, intaglio and relief printing. Advanced techniques must be mastered
in each process. Generally 100 editions must be produced to earn the title.
A liquid with which pigment is mixed by a painter
Print produced by an engraving that has been scraped to represent light or
The act of representing something
Style that breaks with traditional art forms and searches for new modes of
expression (early 20th century).
Painting done in a range of tints and tones of a single color.
Sometimes used interchangeably with monotype, a one-of-a-kind print made by
painting or inking on a sheet of metal or glass and transferring the still
wet painting to a sheet of paper by hand or with an etching press. If enough
paint remains on the master plate, additional prints can be made, however,
the reprint will have substantial variations from the original image. Monotype
printing is not a multiple-replica process since each print is unique.
A picture made up of various proportions of existing pictures, such as photographs
or prints, arranged so they join, overlap, or blend with one another.
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 paper by running the plate and paper
through an etching press.
A painting that is applied to a wall surface.
Style modeled after proportion and restraint of Greek and Roman classical antiquity
(late 20th c.).
Combination of cartoon, graffiti and performance art in a minimalist, unsophisticated
style. (Late 20th c.).
A numbered print is designed to show the limit or size of a print edition.
The number is generally placed over the size of the edition. For example
12/500 indicates that the print is number twelve out of an edition of 500.
Lower numbers used to mean a sharper image, but with modern printing, the
last print should be as sharp as the first "off the press".
A special photo-mechanical technique in which the image to be printed is transferred
to the negative plates and printed onto papers.
A paint made by grinding a coloring substance in oil.
Style with graphic abstraction and pattern-oriented optical effects (mid. 20th
The print produced has an unlimited size. The print may or may not be signed
by the artist. An unsigned, unnumbered print is basically just a poster.
Buying an original means you have the only one. It is the actual painting or
work of art done by the artist. Most times, no reproductions are made of
a painting. When a print has been made, the original painting is what was
photographed for the reproduction. This makes the original to a limited edition
print more valuable in that the piece becomes well known and more appreciated.
Usually the original is larger than the print.
One-of-a-kind print in which artist personally conceived the image, created
the master plates, and executed the entire printing process.
The work of a painter; a painted representation of any object or scene; a picture.
The range of color characteristic of a particular artist, painting, or school
A colored crayon that consists of pigment mixed with just enough of a aqueous
binder to hold it together; a work of art produced by pastel crayons; the
technique itself. Pastels vary according to the volume of chalk contained...the
deepest in tone are pure pigment. Pastel is the simplest and purest method
of painting, since pure color is used without a fluid medium and the crayons
are applied directly to the pastel paper. Pastels are called paintings rather
than drawings, for although no paint is used, the colors are applied in masses
rather than in lines.
A film or an incrustation, usually green, that forms on copper and bronze after
a certain amount of weathering and as a result of the oxidation of the copper.
Special chemical treatments will also induce different colored patinas on
new bronzes. Bronzes may be painted with acrylic and lacquer.
A slender cylinder or strip of black lead, colored chalk, slate, graphite used
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 prespective, 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 color
and by variations in the clarity of oulines.
Dry coloring matter; especially an insoluble powder to be mixed with a liquid
to produce paint.
(Latin, pinxit) He(she) painted it. Generally inscribed next to the artist's
A stencil and stencil-brush process for making muticolored prints, and for
tinting black-and-white prints, and for coloring reproductions and book illustrations,
especially fine and limited editions. Pochoir, which is the French word for
stencil, is sometimes called hand-coloring or hand-illustration. Pochoir,
as distinguished from ordinary stencil work, is a highly refined technique,
skillfully executed in a specialized workshop.
A branch of French Impressionism in which the principle of optical mixture
or broken color 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 colors 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).
Altarpiece or painting with 3 or more panels.
An American school of the 1950's that imitated the techniques of commercial
art and the styles of popular culture and mass media
Any likeness of a person; a painting of a person's face and sometimes their
Genre of art, literature and architecture in reaction against principles and
practices of established modernism or a Style reflecting the exhaustion of
modernist experimentation and a partial return to more traditional forms.
(Late 20th c.)
Prints outside the edition that are generally dedicated to an individual as
A printed picture produced from a photographic negative.
Also known as BAT. Prints outside the edition that are property of the master
Prints outside the edition that show incomplete states of the edition.
Record of ownership for a work of art, ideally from the time it left the artist's
studio to it's present location, thus creating an unbroken ownership history.
The Italian Renaissance art & literature in the 15th century
The groove under the lip of the moulding that allows space for the mat, glass,
art and mounting board.
A current practice of some artists is the addition of a small personalized
drawing or symbol near his pencil signature in the lower margin. The practice
is borrowed from Whister's famous "butterfly" which was added to
personalize many of his graphics. A remarqued print is more desirable to
many serious art collectors. A remarque adds value to a print in that it
then becomes one of a kind with the addition of the original artwork by the
The period of European history at the close of the Middle Ages and the rise
of the modern world; a cultural rebirth from the 14th century through the
From the French verb meaning to push back. A means of achieving perspective
or spacial contrasts by the use of illusionistic devices such as the placement
of a large figure or object i the immediate foreground of a painting to increase
the illusion of depth in the rest of the picture.
An etching plate that is reworked and new editions pulled from new plate.
Creation that is a visual or tangible rendering of someone or something
A fanciful asymmetric ornamentation in art and architecture that originated
in France in the 18th century
A movement of literature and art during the late 18th and early 19th centuries
that celebrated nature rather than civilization
A depression scratched or carved into a surface
Picture consisting of a graphic image of a person or thing.
Basically a stencil or silkscreen process. Was given the name after WW1, by
a noted art historian, Carl Zigrosser. It was established as an art form
in the 1950's. A direct printing process, the image isn't reversed like in
lithography. A screen of silk, nylon or wire mesh is tightly stretched across
a frame. A design is made in stencil form on the mesh by blocking out portions.
The remaining open areas will let the ink through to the paper below. Another
method of stencil making; using tusche and glue, where the artist draws on
the screen with tusche, then coats the entire area with a fast-drying glue.
The tusche is dissolved and the hard glue forms the stencil. You could also
use a series of acetate overlays. One overlay for each color. The artist
draws the image on the overlay with a light-blocking substance. Then the
printer exposes the image and the light passes through the acetate. This
process called, "cutting" the screen leaves the stencil.
A process combining hand drawn lithography and serigraphy.
Technique used to depict hazy, smoky shadows.
Technique in which surface layer of paint is scratched through to reveal color
A preliminary drawing for a later elaboration
Sometimes refers to the signature on the plate itself but is generally the
artist's actual signature on the print after printing.
The artist signs the print only. It is not numbered and is sometimes referred
to as an "open edition".
Signed and Numbered
Refers to an artist's signature (generally in pencil) and the numbering of
Second Edition: prints of the same image as the original edition but
altered in some way (as a change in color, paper or printing process).
Second state: prints of proofs which contain significant changes from
the original print.
A limited edition print is no longer available at issue price and is being
sold at secondary market prices.
A work of art depicting inanimate objects such as fruit, flowers, bottles.
In painting, to apply small dots of color with the point of the brush; also
to apply paint in a uniform layer by tapping a vertically held brush on the
surface in repeated staccato touches.
Invented in the late 1700's by Aloys Senfelder. The image is printed on a flat
surface. The chemicals don't eat away at the plate like they do in etchings,
they simply change the surface to accept or reject the ink. The artist draws
directly on the plate or stone with a greasy pencil and after a chemical
process will accept ink and repel water. Lines can be drawn thick or thin
and at times it is hard to distinguish a lithograph from an actual drawing.
Style using subconscious mental activity as it's subject matter, characterized
by dreamlike, hallucinatory imagery. (Early 20th c.) See artists: Miro, Dali,
Magritte and Ernst.
A genre of French painting characterized by bright flat shapes and symbolic
treatments of abstract ideas.
Document that provides backgraound information on the graphic edition such
as edition size, printer, technique, year of execution.
A painting or carving consisting of three panels
Trompe L'oiel (Pronounced 'Tromp-Loy')
(Trick of the Eye) A style of painting in which architectural details are rendered
in extremely fine detail in order to create the illusion of tangible and
spatial qualities. This form of painting was first used by the Romans, thousands
of years ago in frescoes and murals.
A small illustrative sketch or painting that appears to float suspended on
Used in watercolor painting, brush drawing, and occasionally in oil painting
to describe a broad thin layer of diluted pigment or ink. Also refers to
a drawing made in this technique.
A painting produced by using water-soluble pigments
The total output of an artist