abstraction: Term synonymous with abstract art which is applied to art produced from the early 20th century onwards which does not resemble a recognisable form. It is the opposite of figurative art.

almanac: A type of yearbook.

avant-garde: In relation to art, it is used to describe a movement, artist, or group of artists which produces work which is considered to be breaking away from tradition and which steers art in a new direction.

Byzantine: In relation to art, it denotes work produced in, relating to, or influenced by the work produced in the Byzantine Empire of the east Mediterranean, centred around what is today the city of Istanbul in Turkey. The Byzantine Empire became the Ottoman Empire in 1453 when its capital city, Constantinople, fell to the Turks. Byzantine paintings and mosaics are characterised by 2-dimensional, stylised images dominated by religious themes.

canon of art: Term used to refer to the artists which have played a significant role in the history of art usually through achieving a very high standard in their work.

Cubism: Art movement which took place in the early 20th century and was led by the Spanish artist Pablo Picasso and the French artist Georges Braque. The style of work produced by this movement is characterised by the aim of showing all sides of the subject matter depicted. This aim produced a geometric feel in the resultant images.

Expressionism: In relation to art, it denotes the movement of the early 20th century in which artists were concerned with conveying emotion in their work through subjective rather than objective representations of a given subject. The artists marking the high point of Expressionism were primarily based in Germany and Austria, and included members of the groups Die Brücke and Der Blaue Reiter, both of which were based in Germany. Exponents of this movement include Franz Marc, Wassily Kandinsky, Max Beckmann, Emil Nolde, and Egon Schiele.

Expressionist: Exponent of, or relating to, Expressionism.

Futurism: Italian art movement of the early 20th century which was influenced by politics, the style of which is characterised by the aim of conveying a sense of speed and/or movement. It was founded by the poet Filippo Tommaso Marinetti who published the first Furturist manifesto in 1909. Exponents of this movement include Giacomo Balla.

Futurists: Exponents of Futurism.

hierarchy of painting: Academic notion of classifying subject in painting into a hierarchy of respectability. History painting was at the top of the list, followed by portraiture, then genre, and landscape, still life, and animal painting were ranked at the end of the list.

Icons: Representations of saints or biblical figures in paintings which are used for veneration. Early Renaissance and Byzantine icons were influenced and governed by dogmatic rules set by the Church regarding representations of saints or biblical figures.

Impressionism: French art movement of the late 19th century characterised by the representation of a scene, object, or figure through the application of paint in dabs of colour in order to give an impression of the view rather than an accurate, photographic-like depiction. Exponents of this movement include Claude Monet.

Impressionists: Exponents of Impressionism.

Neo-Platonism: A philosophy which was developed during the Renaissance which married Platonic philosophy with Christian thinking. It was especially discussed in the court of the Medici in Florence, Italy and advanced by the philosophers Marsilio Ficino and Pico della Mirandola.

Neo-Platonic: Adjective relating to Neo-Platonism.

Neue Künstlervereinigung München: German phrase meaning new artists association. The Neue Künstlervereinigung was based in Munich, Germany and was founded in 1909 by the artists Wassily Kandinsky, Alexei von Jawlensky, and Gabriele Münter. Their reasons for establishing the association included their opposition to the mainstream and conventional art present in Munich at that time and the desire to exhibit their own work, which was considered to be avant-garde. The association broke up in 1911 with the resignation of Kandinsky, Münter, and Marc.

oeuvre: The French word for work used to describe the total work produced by an artist throughout his or her career.

Orphism: French art movement developed and derived from Cubism, focusing more on the application of colour in painting and influenced by music. An exponent of this movement is Robert Delaunay

Orphist: Exponent of, or adjective relating to, Orphism.

palette: When used in relation to colours, it denotes the colours most frequently used in painting by an artist and which characterise his or her oeuvre.

pantheism: Belief that God equates to the universe, and vice versa.

pantheistic: Adjective relating to pantheism.

picture plane: Denotes the physical area covered by a painting, drawing, or watercolour.

Renaissance: French word for rebirth used to describe the period in the arts, especially in art and architecture, from the beginning of the 15th century - usually marked by the work of Masaccio - through to the early to mid-16th century, culminating in the work of Leonardo da Vinci, Raphael, and Michelangelo. During this period, artists work was informed by the art and architecture of the ancient Greeks and Romans and through the study of nature. Renaissance is a term usually restricted to work produced in Italy during this period, especially in the cities of Florence, Rome, and Venice.

Romanticism: A broad movement in the arts of the 18th-19th centuries that focused on the experience of the individual. In the field of art, Romanticism did not produce a particular style since it focused on an idea rather than an approach to artistic production. Exponents of Romanticism in art include the landscape artists Caspar David Friedrich and Joseph Mallord William Turner.

Romantic: Exponent of, or adjective relating to, Romanticism.

stylised: Term used to describe a non-naturalistic representation of a subject. This may be achieved through a focus on lines.