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Portal:Visual arts

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THE VISUAL ARTS PORTAL
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Introduction

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Visual arts is a class of art forms focusing on the creation of works that are primarily visual in nature, such as painting, drawing, illustration, architecture, photography, graphic design, printmaking, and filmmaking. Works that involve moulding or modeling, such as sculpture, public art, and ceramics, are more narrowly referred to as plastic arts.

The visual arts are distinguished from the performing arts, language arts, culinary arts and other such classes of artwork, but those boundaries are not well defined. Many artistic endeavors combine aspects of visual arts with one or more non-visual art forms, such as music or spoken word.

The current use of the phrase "visual arts" includes fine arts as well as crafts, but this was not always the case. Prior to the Arts and Crafts movement in Britain and elsewhere at the turn of the 20th century, "visual artist" referred to a person working in the fine arts (such as painting, sculpture, or printmaking) and not the handicraft, craft, or applied art disciplines.

The scope of study and appreciation of visual arts spans the globe, and reaches through time back to people drawing on stone walls. All societies have embellished their tools and toys with more visual interest than is functionally necessary.

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Liberty Leading the People
Credit: Aavindraa

Liberty Leading the People is a painting by Eugène Delacroix commemorating the July Revolution of 1830, which toppled Charles X of France. A woman personifying Liberty leads the people forward over the bodies of the fallen, holding the tricolore flag of the French Revolution in one hand and brandishing a bayonetted musket with the other. The painting is perhaps Delacroix's best-known work.

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Dr. Haggis
Northwest Coast art is a style of art created primarily by artists from Tlingit, Haida, Tsimshian, Kwakwaka'wakw and Nuu-chah-nulth First Nations of the northwest coast of North America, from pre-European-contact times up to the present.

Northwest Coast art is distinguished by the use of form lines, and the use of characteristic shapes referred to as ovoids, U forms and S forms. Before European contact, the most common media were wood (often Western red cedar), stone, and copper; since European contact, paper and canvas have also been used. If paint is used, the most common colours are red and black, but yellow is also often used, particularly among Kwakwaka'wakw artists.

The patterns depicted include natural forms such as bears, ravens, eagles, and humans; legendary creatures such as thunderbirds and sisiutls; and abstract forms made up of the characteristic Northwest Coast shapes. Totem poles are the most well-known artifacts produced using this style. Northwest Coast artists are also notable for producing characteristic "bent-corner" or "bentwood" boxes, masks, and canoes. Northwest Coast designs were also used to decorate traditional First Nations household items such as spoons, ladles, baskets, hats, and paddles; since European contact, the Northwest Coast art style has increasingly been used in gallery-oriented forms such as paintings, prints and sculptures.


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The creative act is not performed by the artist alone; the spectator brings the work in contact with the external world by deciphering and interpreting its inner qualifications and thus adds his contribution to the creative act.
Marcel Duchamp, The Creative Act (1957)


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Selected biography

El Greco: Self portrait (1604)
El Greco was a prominent painter, sculptor and architect of the Spanish Renaissance. El Greco was born in Crete, which was at that time part of the Republic of Venice, and at 26 travelled to Venice to study. In 1570 he moved to Rome, where he opened a workshop and executed a series of works, during his stay in Italy, El Greco enriched his style with elements of Mannerism and of the Venetian Renaissance. In 1577 he emigrated to Toledo, Spain, where he lived and worked until his death; in Toledo El Greco received several major commissions and produced his best known paintings. El Greco's dramatic and expressionistic style was met with puzzlement by his contemporaries but found appreciation in the 20th century. El Greco is regarded as a precursor of both Expressionism and Cubism, while his personality and works were a source of inspiration for poets and writers such as Rainer Maria Rilke and Nikos Kazantzakis. El Greco has been characterized by modern scholars as an artist so individual that he belongs to no conventional school, he is best known for tortuously elongated figures and often fantastic or phantasmagorical pigmentation, marrying Byzantine traditions with those of Western civilization.


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Major topics


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WikiProjects

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Categories

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Visual arts

Architecture | Ceramic art | Comics | Crafts | Design | Drawing | Illustration | Film | Glass | Graphic design | Industrial design | Landscape architecture | Multimedia | Painting | Photography | Pottery | Printmaking | Public art | Sculpture | Typography | Mosaic


Artists | Art awards | Artist collectives | Art collectors | Art critics | Art curators | Art exhibitions | Art forgery | Art history | Art materials | Art schools | Artistic techniques | Conservation and restoration


Art by country | Art genres | Art movements | Women artists | Years in art



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References