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Glossary of Art Terms: 'F'

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An early-20th-century movement in painting begun by a group of French artists and marked by the use of bold, often distorted forms and vivid colors. It was essentially an expressionist style, characterized by bold distortion of forms and exuberant color. Some notable Fauvist painters were Henri Matisse, Andre Derain and Georges Braque.

Fine Art

A term used to refer to fields traditionally considered to be artistic. "Fine Art" is a distinction referring to its aim to be purely aesthetic, having only the purpose of inspiring or stimulating the viewer's emotions. Crafts, on the other hand, are more commonly used as simple decorations or made to serve a practical purpose.

Fine Art gallery

A business establishment where paintings, sculpture and other fine art objects are exhibited and sold.

focal point

The area of an artwork's composition on which interest or attention centers. In other words, the point of primary focus.


The making of fraudulent copies of anything of value. Reproductions are usually marked to denote it as being a copy, but for a forgery, great care is taken to make the copy appear to be the original with the intent of defrauding a collector.


Formalism in art theory is the belief that aesthetic values can stand alone and that judgments of art can be detached from other considerations such as ethical or social ones. Precedence is given to the purely formal or abstract qualities of the work, those visual elements that give it form: line, tone, composition and color.


A method of painting on plaster. Pigments are applied to thin layers of wet plaster so that they will be absorbed and the painting becomes part of the wall itself.