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term definition
Calypso One of the most popular music forms of Trinidad brought to the Americas in the 18th century. Introduced by African slaves, it derives from songs of praise and derision. Carnival seasons provide the principal stimulus for the composition and performance of these topical songs.

Candomble Brazilian version of Santeria, also know as Santuario

Canvas Commonly used as a support for oil or acrylic painting. Canvas is a heavy woven fabric made of flax or cotton. Its surface is typically prepared for painting by priming with a ground. Linen-- made of flax-- is the standard canvas, and very strong. A less expensive alternative to linen is heavy cotton duck, though it is less durable, because it's more prone to absorb dampness. For use in painting, a piece of canvas is stretched tightly by stapling or tacking it to a stretcher frame.

Carnival In its general and universal sense, carnival is the great festival of life, the renewal of life in the spring and is a cultural religious celebration in many civilizations. Such festivities were naturally expressed in dance, music, masquerades, and erotic revelry. Latter-day forms were considerably tempered by the Catholic Church, a day or period which commemorated the onset of Lent, the 40 week days from Ash Wednesday to Easter observed by Roman Catholic, Eastern and Protestant churches as a period of penitence and fasting. The Caribbean carnival is celebrated in a highly colorful performance and masquerade known as mas.

Casein engraving A technique in which a piece of Masonite board is built up to about 1/16 inch thickness in multiple layers of casein. This is then used as a plate for engraving. The engraved surface should be sealed before inking.

Cercle et Carré (Fr. 'Circle and Square') Name taken by a group of artist formed in Paris in 1929 by Mondrian and Joaquín Torres-García whos single group exhibition, incorporating works by 46 Constructivist artists, took place in April 1930 at Galerie 23 in Paris. Torres-García left the group shortly after a disagreement with Michel Seuphor.

Charcoal Compressed burned wood used for drawing

Chiaroscuro A word borrowed from Italian ("light" and "dark") referring to the modeling of volume and depth by depicting light and shade by contrasting them boldly

Classical This term has come to have several meaning. Originally it was used when referring to the art of ancient Greece produced during the fifth and fourth centuries B.C. Later it included all works of art created from 600 B.C. until the fall of Rome. Still later it was used to describe any art form thought to be inspired or influenced by ancient Greek or Roman examples. Today, classical is used to describe European concepts of perfection of form, with an emphasis on harmony and unity and restraint of emotion. Usually, it is applied to works that are representational but idealistic. In Latin America, Classicism was adopted by the Academic schools, with much of the same pictorial guidelines, but often dealt with romantic indigenous or historical themes.

Collage A picture or design created by adhering such basically flat elements as newspaper, wallpaper, printed text and illustrations, photographs, cloth, string, etc. Introduced by the Cubist artists, it was widely used by artists who followed, and is a familiar technique in contemporary art. Combined Painting is an extension of principle of collage, in that flat or three- dimensional "Objets Trouvés" ("found objects") are attached to the surface of the composition, and are sometimes painted over, sometimes left in their natural state.

Color Produced when light strikes an object and then reflects back to your eyes. The methods used for color specification today belong to a technique known as colorimetry and consist of accurate scientific measurements based on the wavelengths of three primary colors. An element of art with three properties: (1) hue or tint, the color name, e.g., red, yellow, blue, etc.: (2) intensity, the purity and strength of a color, e.g., bright red or dull red; and (3) value, the lightness or darkness of a color. Photographers measure color temperature in degrees kelvin (K).

Complementary colors Colors that are directly opposite each other on the color wheel, such as red and green, blue and orange, and violet and yellow. When complements are mixed together they form the neutral colors of brown or gray.

Contemporary Current, belonging to the same period of time. Usually referring to our present time, but can refer to being current with any specified time.

Content What a work of art is essentially about; its subject matter. Content should not be confused with form -a work's physical characteristics- or context -a work's environment, time, place, audience, its reasons for production, etc.- although each of these effect each other, and a work's total significance. On the other hand, many Post-modern scholars increasingly feel that content is the meaning of a work beyond its subject matter-- denotations-- that it consists also of its connotations, levels of meaning which are not obviously apparent.

Contrapposto It is an Italian art term describing a pose in which the human body is twisted so that the chest and shoulders face one direction, balanced by the hips and legs facing another. The term was coined during the Renaissance, but Greek sculptors used the pose in the 5th century BC to make the figure more emotionally expressive.

Cool colors Color often associated with water, sky, spring, and foliage, and suggest coolness. These are the colors which contain blue and green and appear on one side of the color wheel opposite the warm colors. Psychologically, cool colors are said to be calming, unemphatic, and depressive; optically, they generally appear to recede.

Costumbrismo Artistic genre of documenting or mimicking local customs, manners, and dress. It originated in the colonial period and became a major nationalistic genre in Latin America and Caribbean art in the early 1900's and reappears in modern Latin American art today.

Coulisses Elements arranged at the sides of a picture, particularly a landscape, so as to direct the spectatorís eye toward some central point.

Creole Initially meant locally born and was used to refer to the white colonial elite and locally born slaves. Today the term is used to describe the dialects and syncretic languages of the Caribbean and the syncretic nature of Caribbean culture.

Cubism One of the most influential art movements of the early twentieth century, Cubism was developed by Pablo Picasso (Spanish, 1882-1973) and Georges Braque (French, 1882-1963), around 1908, who were greatly inspired by African sculpture, by Paul Cézanne's later works (French, 1839-1906). In Latin America, cubism was highly influential and integral to the Modernist movement. In Cubism the subject matter is broken up, analyzed, and reassembled in an abstracted form. Picasso and Braque initiated the movement when they followed the advice of Paul Cézanne, who in 1904 said artists should treat nature "in terms of the cylinder, the sphere and the cone." Although the look of cubism and the ideas behind it evolved over time, cubism retained certain general characteristics throughout. Within just a few years, cubism as a method of investigation lost its intellectual rigor and became decorative and thus stylized. Nonetheless, its influence on the development of painting in the 20th century was enormous. In Latin America it helped initiate a rupture with past art forms that was far more radical than in Europe. However radical Cubism was in Paris, its relationship with previous art forms, particularly Cézanne's later period, was evident. There were three phases in the development of Cubism: Facet Cubism, Analytic Cubism, and Synthetic Cubism.