Art Terms Glossary beginning with A

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A la poupée
A single plate is selectively inked in different colors, using stumps of rag known as a poupée.
Plant from the Mediterranean region with fleshy, curling, large-lobed, and more or less stylized leaves; often used as ornament in manuscript painting, especially for border decoration.
When a printmaker uses the design (often a painting or drawing) of another artist as a basis for a print.
A general term referring to any basic material (pH greater than 7). Historically, 'alkali' referred to hydroxides and carbonates of sodium and potassium. Alkalis act as fluxes in ceramics and glass production-enabling silica to melt at lower temperatures.
The mother of the Virgin Mary.
A choral book containing the music used in the Divine Office, the cycle of daily devotions of the year. The musical counterpart to the breviary.
Antique Laid Paper
The type of paper produced in Western Europe until roughly the middle of the 18th century is referred to as antique laid, or laid and chain or simply, laid. Paper type relates directly to the paper mould that was in use at this time. Early Western European paper was handmade on a rigid mould consisting of a rectangular wooden frame with a fixed wire cover. The cover was made from drawn copper wire. Closely spaced laid wires that ran parallel to the long, horizontal side of the mould were woven/tied to vertically oriented, shorter chain wires. Chain wires were more widely spaced at fairly regular intervals and provided rigidity and stability to the laid wires. On the underside of the mould cover, oriented parallel to the chain wires and short side of the mould, were wooden ribs. The wooden ribs also lent rigidity and support to the mould cover and their placement and spacing generally matched that of the chain wires. Wires shaped into various designs/symbols could be sewn or tied to the wire cover to impart a watermark in the final sheet. The final basic component of the rigid mould was a removable wooden collar called a deckle. This was carefully constructed to fit snugly around the top of the mould, covering approximately 2cm on all four sides. The purpose of the deckle was to prevent the wet paper pulp from running off the edges of the mould cover. Apparently, in order to do the intended job, the deckle had to be manufactured with more skill and precision than the mould itself! The raw material for making paper was rags - old discarded clothing and miscellaneous textiles made from linen and hemp primarily. Rags were first sorted, then retted (a fermenting and soaking process) and finally beaten into a homogenous pulp. The pulp was dispersed in vats of water to form a loose slurry of well-hydrated fibers (called stuff). The wooden mould with the deckle firmly in place was grasped along the short sides of the mold and drawn through the stuff so that the rib
Fine particles of acid-resistant resin are deposited on the plate and heated so they adhere to the surface. The plate is immersed in acid which bites into the plate in tiny pools around each particle. The tiny depressions retain the ink and when printed give the effect of a soft grain similar to watercolor.
Christian Saint and perhaps the Church's most celebrated and influential theologian. Born at Tagaste in Numidia in 354 A.D.