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term definition
Ferente Group Brazilian group whose artistic philosophy embraced geometric abstraction as opposed to figurative art

Figurative Art Art which portrays, in however altered or distorted a form, things perceived in the visible world.

Figure–Ground relationship In a painting, the way in which an object or shape is related to the background against which we see it. Human perception normally operates in such a way the figure seems to advance, and lie in front of the background. Sometimes, however, especially with Abstract Art where the figure and the background occupy approximately the same amount of space, the relationship becomes confused, so that the background assumes equal importance to the subject of the work.

Folk Art Art perceived to be unsophisticated art, both fine and applied, which is supposedly rooted in the collective awareness of simple people. Today it carries a simple nostalgia for pre- industrial society.

Foreshortening A method of drawing so as to produce the illusion of the extension of an object or figure into space. Also the technique of depicting an object lying at an angle of the picture – plane by means of perspective devices (e.g. making it narrower and paler as it recedes). The eye of the spectator then automatically reconstructs the object in its correct proportions.

Form In its widest sense, total structure; a synthesis of all the visible aspects of that structure and of the manner in which they are united to create its distinctive character. The form of a work is what enables us to apprehend it. Form also refers to an element of art that is three-dimensional (height, width, and depth) and encloses volume. For example, a triangle, which is two-dimensional, is a shape, but a pyramid, which is three-dimensional, is a form. Cubes, spheres, pyramids, cone, and cylinders are examples of various forms. Also, all of the elements of a work of art independent of their meaning. Formal elements are primary features which are not a matter of semantic significance -- including color, dimensions, line, mass, medium, scale, shape, space, texture, value; and the principles of design under which they are placed-- including balance, contrast, dominance, harmony, movement, proportion, proximity, rhythm, similarity, unity, and variety.

Formalism Art, and critical writing about art, which place the emphasis on the analysis of form and the use of formal elements rather than on content. Formalist critics tend to put greater significance on the object instead of the historical context and the sources of patronage.

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