Definitions for terms beginning with the letter P

Roy Lichtenstein, 'Whaam!' 1963

Pop art describes the work of artists working in the 1950s and 1960s in Britain and America who drew inspiration from popular and commercial culture

Roy Lichtenstein
Whaam! 1963
Acrylic and oil on canvas
support: 1727 x 4064 mm frame: 1747 x 4084 x 60 mm
Purchased 1966© Estate of Roy Lichtenstein

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Tate glossary definition for painterly: Refers to the application of paint in a 'loose' or less than controlled manner, resulting in the appearance of visible brushstrokes within the finished painting
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Tate glossary definition for painting: The practice of applying paint or other media to a surface, usually with a brush
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Tate glossary definition for palette: A smooth, flat surface on which artists set out and mix their colours before painting, often designed to be held in the hand
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Tate glossary definition for pan-Africanism: An ideology of racial solidarity with Africa and its diaspora formed in the mid-nineteenth century
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Tate glossary definition for pan-Arabism: A movement devoted to the unification and modernisation of the Arab-speaking world which took root in the late nineteenth century as Arab nations sought independence from the Ottoman Empire
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Tate glossary definition for panel: Rigid support or surface for painting on
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Tate glossary definition for paper: Matted plant fibres made into sheet form either by hand (traditional) or machine (modern), used by artists as a surface for drawing, watercolour or printmaking
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Tate glossary definition for papier collé: Papier collé (pasted paper) is a specific form of collage that is closer to drawing than painting
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Tate glossary definition for Papunya Tula: An Aboriginal artist collective formed in 1972 in Papunya, Australia, who use traditional Aboriginal art forms and imagery to express their identity
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Tate glossary definition for parallel cinema: Movement that began in the 1960s in India with a group of socially conscious film directors who began to produce low-budget films in parallel to the country’s highly successful commercial film industrc
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Tate glossary definition for parchment: A surface for drawing or writing made from the skins of calves, goats and sheep
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Tate glossary definition for participatory art: a form of art that directly engages the audience in the creative process so that they become participants in the event
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Tate glossary definition for pastel : A coloured drawing medium made from pure coloured pigment mixed with a binder to form a stick
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Tate glossary definition for patina: Usually refers to a distinct green or brown surface layer on bronze sculpture
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Tate glossary definition for pen and ink: Drawing technique involving the application of ink using a quill or pen with metal nib
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Tate glossary definition for pencil: An implement for drawing or writing made from graphite (a metallic grey crystallized form of carbon) encased in a wooden cylinder
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Tate glossary definition for pendant: A pendant picture is one of two pictures designed to hang together as a matching pair
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Tate glossary definition for Penwith Society of Arts: Artists’ society formed in 1948 at St Ives, Cornwall, Britain by artists working in an abstract style
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Tate glossary definition for perceptismo: Art movement founded in Argentina in 1947 that proposed an approach to abstract painting based on a mathematically formulated relationship between colours and geometric shapes
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Tate glossary definition for performance art: Art for which the artist uses their own body as the medium and performs an action or series of actions which become the artwork
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Tate glossary definition for performativity: Describes the interdependent relationship between certain words and actions – as when a word or sentence implies an action
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Tate glossary definition for perspective: A system for representing objects in three-dimensional space on the two-dimensional surface of a picture
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Tate glossary definition for PESTS: An anonymous protest and pressure group of artists operating in New York in the 1980s who aimed to expose the discrimination and tokenism directed towards artists from racial minorities by commercial galleries
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Tate glossary definition for the photobook: The photobook is a book of photographs by a photographer that has an overarching theme or follows a storyline
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Tate glossary definition for photogram: Photographic prints made by laying objects onto photographic paper and exposing it to light
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Tate glossary definition for photography: The process or practice of creating a photograph – an image produced by the action of light on a light-sensitive material
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Tate glossary definition for photomontage: A collage constructed from photographs
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Tate glossary definition for photorealism: Painting style that emerged in Europe and the USA in the late 1960s, characterised by its painstaking detail and precision
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Tate glossary definition for pictorialism: An experimental photographic movement dating from the later nineteenth and early twentieth centuries that sought to elevate the photograph to the status of painting or drawing
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Tate glossary definition for picture plane: The physical surface of the painting
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Tate glossary definition for pictures generation: Name given to a group of American artists who came of age in the early 1970s and who were known for their critical analysis of media culture
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Tate glossary definition for picturesque: An ideal type of landscape that has an artistic appeal, in that it is beautiful but also with some elements of wildness
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Tate glossary definition for Pittura Metafisica (metaphysical art): Early twentieth century Italian art movement typified by dream-like views of eerie arcaded squares with unexpected juxtapositions of objects
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Tate glossary definition for plane: A plane surface is a flat surface, and any distinct flat surface within a painting or sculpture can be referred to as a plane
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Tate glossary definition for plaster of Paris: A fine white powder which, when mixed with water, forms a white solid
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Tate glossary definition for plein air: Refers to the practice of painting entire finished pictures out of doors
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Tate glossary definition for plinth: A heavy base or box on which a sculpture stands or is presented
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Tate glossary definition for pluralism: In an art context, pluralism refers to the late 1960s and 1970s when art, politics and culture merged as artists began to believe in a more socially and politically responsive form of art
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Tate glossary definition for Polaroid print: A Polaroid print is a positive print that is produced shortly after exposure by a Polaroid camera
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Tate glossary definition for political pop: Art movement that emerged in China in the 1980s and combined western Pop art with socialist realism to create art that questioned the political and social climate of a rapidly changing China
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Tate glossary definition for polyptych: A painting or other two-dimensional artwork made up of more than three panels
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Tate glossary definition for Pont-Aven: The coastal town in Brittany, north-west France, which Paul Gauguin frequented between 1886 and 1894
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Tate glossary definition for pop art: Name given to art made in America and Britain from the mid 1950s and 1960s that drew inspiration from sources in popular and commercial culture
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Tate glossary definition for portfolio: A number of prints presented as a group and often, though not necessarily, by the same artist and based on a related theme
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Tate glossary definition for portrait: A portrait is a representation of a particular person
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Tate glossary definition for post-impressionism: Umbrella term to describe changes in impressionism from about 1886, the date of last Impressionist group show in Paris
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Tate glossary definition for postcolonial art: Art produced in response to the aftermath of colonial rule, frequently addressing issues of national and cultural identity, race and ethnicity
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Tate glossary definition for postmodernism: Term used from about 1970 to describe changes seen to take place in Western society and culture from the 1960s onwards
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Tate glossary definition for post-painterly abstraction: A blanket term covering a range of new developments in abstract painting in the late 1950s and early 1960s characterised by a more rigorous approach to abstraction
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Tate glossary definition for Pre-Raphaelite: Founded in London in 1848, a secret society of young artists (and one writer) who were opposed to the Royal Academy’s promotion of the ideal as exemplified in the work of Raphael
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Tate glossary definition for primitivism: Term used to describe the fascination of early modern European artists with tribal art from Africa, the South Pacific and Indonesia, as well as prehistoric and very early European art, and European folk art
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Tate glossary definition for print: An impression made by any method involving transfer from one surface to another
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Tate glossary definition for process art: Art in which the process of its making is not hidden but remains a prominent aspect of the completed work, so that a part or even the whole of its subject is the making of the work
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Tate glossary definition for proof: A printing term applied to all individual impressions made before work on a printing plate or block is completed, in order to check progress of the image
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Tate glossary definition for proportion: The relationship of one part of a whole to other parts
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Tate glossary definition for provenance: The provenance of a work of art is the history of its ownership
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Tate glossary definition for psychedelic art: Generally associated with the 1960s and work made by artists under the influence of the mind-expanding drug LSD
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Tate glossary definition for psychogeography: A term coined by the Marxist theorist Guy Debord in 1955 in order to describe the effect of a geographical location on the emotions and behaviour of individuals
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Tate glossary definition for public art: Art that is in the public realm, regardless of whether it is situated on public or private property or whether it has been purchased with public or private money
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Tate glossary definition for purism: Movement formed around 1918 which proposed a kind of painting in which objects are represented as powerful basic forms stripped of detail
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