See also articles on individual painters, e.g., Rubens ; countries, e.g., Dutch art ; periods, e.g., Renaissance art and architecture ; techniques, e.g., encaustic .
Materials and Techniques
Painters use a number of materials to produce the effects they desire. These include the materials of the surface, or ground; the pigments employed; the binder, or medium, in which the color is mixed; and its diluting agent. Among the various media used by artists are fresco , watercolor , oil, distemper, gouache, tempera , and encaustic . In addition to these, painting properly embraces many other techniques ordinarily associated with drawing , a term that is often used to refer to the linear aspects of the same art.
If painting and drawing are not always clearly distinguishable from each other, both are to be distinguished from the print (or work of graphic art), in which the design is not produced directly but is transferred from another surface to that which it decorates. While the print may be one of many identical works, the painting or drawing is always unique. Painting has been freely combined with many other arts, including sculpture, architecture, and, in the modern era, photography.
In ancient Greece and medieval Europe most buildings and sculptures were painted; nearly all of the ancient decoration has been lost, but some works from Egypt have preserved their coloring and give us an insight into the importance such an art can assume. The art of painting in China was linked from the 1st cent. AD with the development of the Buddhist faith. Early Christian and then Byzantine artists established iconographic and stylistic prototypes in wall painting and manuscript illumination that remained the basis for Christian art (see iconography ).
Highly spiritualized... [continues]
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