Art terms explained
In this glossary we’ve explained some common art terms, and plan to add more terms and more detail. Use the Website feedback page to suggest additional terms to be explained.
also spelled tachism. Used to describe a type of abstract art that was common in Europe in the 1940s and ’50s – see art informel. Tache means ‘stain’ in French but is also used to describe discrete brushmarks or dabs of paint. Paul Cézanne (1839–1906) and Claude Monet (1840–1926) had earlier been known as ‘painters of the tache’, and the term tachisme has been used in association with Impressionism and Fauvism.
in a general sense, it means any kind of binder (eg glue, gum) that is mixed with pigment to make it workable but it usually refers to egg tempera (which traditionally uses either egg-yolk and water or sometimes oil and whole egg). Can also refer to the painting technique that uses this substance.
a hard-baked reddish-brown clay used for pottery, sculpture and architectural decoration.
in photography, a process that converts the black silver within the print to another metallic compound. It can sharpen contrast. Blacks can be made to look warmer (browner) or colder (bluish) by adding toners.