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Piranesi Giovanni Battista (c. 1720-78). Italian engraver and architect, famous for his views of the ruins of Rome and fantastic compositions of building interiors. His profound knowledge of archaeology found full expression in imaginary studies of prisons, ruins, vaults and arcades full of highly contrasting light and dark shadows. Influenced by the landscape painting of Claude Lorraine, his own work helped to establish the pattern of the Italian Romantic landscape. Of his great output of etchings and engravings the Imaginary Prisons (Carceri d'inwenzione), a series of plates issued in 1750, is justly the most famous. His son Francesco (c. 1758—1810) completed and reissued a number of his plates.

Pirosmanishvili Niko (1863-1918). Russian painter. By training an artisan sign painter, he was taken up by *Larionov and invited to contribute to his exhibitions. A primitive in style, P. showed talent comparable to that of Le Douanier (Henri) Rousseau and his painting enjoyed in Russia a cult similar to Rousseau's in Paris.

Pisanello Antonio Pisano, called (1395-1455). Italian court painter and medallist, the most celebrated of his time. His work is characterized by a minute and accurate observation of reality and his naturalism, though within the decorative
convention of his time, stands out in marked contrast to the more idyllic and linear expression of his great contemporary Gentile da Fabriano. He was a draughtsman of genius and his drawings became examples for the artists of the Renaissance. As a medallist he carried the craft to its highest peak. The early Vision of St Eustace, perhaps his greatest and most imaginative painting, is an excellent illustration of his naturalism, his rendering of the splendour of knighthood and his joy in nature both animate and inanimate. His frescoes in Rome, Venice, Pavia and Mantua have been lost; only 2 frescoes in Verona have survived.

Pisano Andrea (c. 1270—1348). Italian goldsmith, sculptor and architect. In 1330 he was commissioned to execute the 1st pair of bronze doors of the Baptistery at Florence. Completed m 1336, the doors show scenes from the life of St John the Baptist and allegoric themes of the Cardinal and Christian Virtues. P.'s style is distinguished by the clear disposition of detached and grouped figures against a simple background. His association with the Duomo at Florence continued for the rest of his life, as he was appointed m 1337 to complete Giotto's Campanile with the addition of 2 storeys and reliefs. Influenced by Giotto and G. Pisano, he himself exercised a profound influence on some of the most important Florentine sculptors, e.g. Ghiberti, Donatello and Luca della Robbia. His son Nino (c. 1315—68?) was also a sculptor.

Pisano Giovanni (c. 1245/50-r. 1314). Italian sculptor and architect, son of Nicola P. The dramatic quality of his sculpture influenced Giotto, but its form is more French and more Gothic than his father's; the forms are sinuous, the draperies graceful. P. also designed the facade of Siena cathedral.

Pisano Nicola (c. 1220/5-c. 1284). Italian sculptor who with his son Giovanni carved the pulpits in the Pisa Baptistery, in Pisa cathedral, in Siena cathedral and at Pistoia. The first 2 are mainly by Nicola, the last 2 mainly by Giovanni; but their exact shares are in dispute. Possibly trained in southern Italy which, under the Emperor Frederick II, witnessed a Roman revival in the mid-13th c, P. copied Roman reliefs, evolving a plastic style with horizontal composition in depth, new m medieval art and anticipating Renaissance methods. Other works executed jointly with his son include the reliefs on the Fontana Maggiore, Perugia (1278).

Pissarro Camille (1830—1903). French *Impressiomst painter, born in St Thomas, Dutch East Indies, but educated in Paris. He worked under Corot and at the Academic Suissc where he met Manet, Monet and probably Courbet and Cezanne. Corot advised him to paint small sketches before nature and above all to 'study light and tonal values: execution and colour simply add charm to the picture'. Early landscapes such as The Manic at Chennevieres (1864—5) were highly praised by Zola, Castagnary and other critics but received little public recognition; P. earned his living painting decorative blinds and fans. From the late 1860s he was a major figure of the Impressionist circle: he alone exhibited at all 8 exhibitions (1874—86) which he largely organized. Despite great poverty he refused to seek Salon recognition.
Influential as a teacher — for Cezanne and for Gauguin (c. 1879—83) — he was himself open to changing influences. In the 1880s, dissatisfied with his own technique, he imitated Seurat's Divisionist manner and his series of paintings of the single motifs under changing conditions were directly inspired by Monet. Despite this, his work is remarkable for its consistency. He was in London from 1870 to 1872 (Paige Station, 1871) where he admired Constable, Turner and Dutch painting, but lived principally at Pontoise until 1884 when he settled at Eragny. His paintings differ from those of the other Impressionists in 2 major respects. Firstly the Pontoise paintings particularly, e.g. Cote du Jallais (1867) are more carefully composed with a high horizon, controlled recession and dense colour areas. These are the paintings that influenced Cezanne, who worked with P. at Pontoise at intervals (1872—7). Secondly his landscape, as well as being a direct observation of certain conditions, was always inhabited. Fie admired Millet and Daumier and shared their respect for the working man. There are often strong socialist undertones in his letters.

Pissarro Lucien (1863—1944). French painter, the son of Camille P. He first exhibited with the Impressionists in 1886 and at the Salon des Independents from 1886 to 1894. From 1893 he lived and worked in Britain and was later associated with the *New English Art Club. His style and subject matter were much influenced by those of his famous father.

Pistoletto Michelangelo (1933— ). Italian painter in whose work characteristically highly polished surfaces coated with plastic varnish reflect, mirror-like, the viewers and what surrounds them. His self-portraits of the early 1960s and his reflecting paintings were followed by photographed drawings attached to polished metal surfaces and *trompe l'ail paintings with Plexiglas surfaces. In other works, he uses mirrors to repeat the motif of reflection.

Pittura Metafisica. *Metaphysical painting

Pittura Metafisica [Arte Metafisica].

Term applied to the work of GIORGIO DE CHIRICO and CARLO CARRÀ before and during World War I and thereafter to the works produced by the Italian artists who grouped around them. Pittura Metafisica was characterized by a recognizable iconography: a fictive space was created in the painting, modelled on illusionistic one-point perspective but deliberately subverted. In de Chirico’s paintings this established disturbingly deep city squares, bordered by receding arcades and distant brick walls; or claustrophobic interiors, with steeply rising floors. Within these spaces classical statues and, most typically, metaphysical mannequins (derived from tailors’ dummies) provided a featureless and expressionless, surrogate human presence. Balls, coloured toys and unidentifiable solids, plaster moulds, geometrical instruments, military regalia and small realistic paintings were juxtaposed on exterior platforms or in crowded interiors and, particularly in Carrà’s work, included alongside the mannequins. In the best paintings these elements were combined to give a disconcerting image of reality and to capture the disquieting nature of the everyday.

Plains Indian art. The art of the American Indian peoples living in the vast area between the Rocky Mountains and the Mississippi River, principally the Arapaho, Blackfoot, Cheyenne, Comanche, Dakota (Sioux) and Kiowa. Their art shares a common style. Buffalo-skin robes and buckskin shirts are embellished with quill decorations and painted designs, both abstract and realistic animal forms.

Plasticiens, Les.

Canadian group of artists based in Montreal, active from 1955 to 1959. They announced themselves with the publication of a manifesto on 10 February 1955 on the occasion of an exhibition at L’Echourie, a coffee bar in Montreal. The four signatories, who had begun exhibiting together in 1954, were Louis Belzile (b 1929), Jean-Paul Jérôme (b 1928), Fernand Toupin (b 1930) and Jauran (pseudonym of Rodolphe de Repentigny, 1926–59); the text was written by Jauran, who was influential as an art critic for La Presse. The manifesto proclaimed the need for a return to order in art in reaction to the prevalence of the subjective tendencies of Abstract Expressionism; the group’s name was chosen in homage to the Neo-Plasticism of Theo van Doesburg and Piet Mondrian.

Plasticity. This word is sometimes used in art criticism when discussing paintings in which the 2-dimensional figures give a strong impression of solidity.

Plein air (Fr. open air). Term used of paintings which convey an open-air feeling, and particularly of those actually painted out-of-doors. Hence it is most frequently used of the work of the Impressionists.

Point Armand b Algiers, 23 March 1861; d Marlotte, Seine-et-Marne, March 1932. French painter and designer. He began his career painting the Algerian scenes of his youth, rendering Orientalist subjects—such as markets and musicians—with a distinctive, unaffected precision. In 1888 he went to Paris to study at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts under Auguste Herst (b 1825) and Fernand Cormon. He exhibited at the Sociйtй Nationale des Beaux-Arts from 1890.
Pointillism. *Neo-Impressiomsm

Polidoro da Caravaggio (1490/5—1 543). Italian painter, pupil of Raphael and assistant on decorative works in the Vatican. After the Sack of Rome (1527) he worked in Naples and Messina. He painted monochrome imitation antique frescoes on Roman house facades and was among the earliest classical landscapists; he was admired by Poussin and Claude.

Polke Sigmar (1941— ). German painter and photographer. In the early '60s he collaborated with G. *Richter and Konrad Fischer-Lueg on a project which was a version of U.S. *Pop art, called Kapitalistischer Ilealismus, that celebrated consumerism, e.g. Plastik-Wanuen (1964). In the early '70s he adopted ideas from *Picabia using motifs of mythologized trivia. Subsequently he used a wide variety of styles and materials, including fabrics and *found objects. In the early '80s he produced *psychedelic paintings, e.g. Alice in Wonderland (1983) and later in that decade large canvases filled with menacing images — barbed wire, ovens and cages, e.g. Hochstand (1984) and Lager (1985) which may parody German *Neo-Expressionist painters such as *Kiefer. Colours and their chemical reactions became prominent in subsequent large-format, semi-abstract pictures, e.g. his Althanor Installation at the 1986 Venice Biennale.

Pollaiuolo Antonio (c. 1432—98). Italian painter, sculptor, engraver and goldsmith believed to have been the pupil of Andrea del Castagno; he worked closely with his brother Piero (1443—96). Their work is strongly influenced by antiquity. Early scientist-artists of the Florentine Renaissance, according to Vasari they practised dissection in order to understand the human body. Their undoubted masterpiece is the Martyrdom of St Sebastian; this innovates in presenting figures with a clearly defined muscular structure, showing variations of the same movement from every side and many angles. In the engraving Battle of the Nude Men, influenced by Mantegna, the action is even more violent and tile display of muscular structure complete. Apollo and Daphne and Hercules and Nessus set their subject in a lyrical landscape closely observed but transcending mere topographical observation. The brothers spent their last years working on the bronze tombs of Sixtus IV and Innocent VIII in Rome. The gesture of the Pope and the arrangement of figures on the tomb of Innocent was copied on later funeral monuments.

Pollini Gino. Italian Architecture.

Pollock Jackson (1912-56). U.S. painter. He studied under *Benton in N.Y. in 1929; he-worked for the *W.P.A. Art Project (1938). His early work is characteristic of the U.S. romantic realism of the 1930s and also shows the influence of *Ryder: thickly painted, energetic, Expressionist seascapes and landscapes, small in scale. During this period P. was also attracted to the work of the Mexican muralists *Orozco, *Rivera and *Siqueiros whose large-scale works probably influenced the later enormous P. paintings. By 1936 he was influenced by *Surrealism and by Picasso, Mondrian, Miro and *Masson. He became the central figure of U.S. * Abstract Expressionism. His achievement was an important contribution to the rise of modern U.S. painting and his early death in a road accident (1956) has added a legendary character to his reputation. He contributed to the International Surrealist Exhibition, N.Y. (1942) and became associated with other N.Y. Surrealists. She Wolf (1943) shows the closeness to Masson at this point, but he developed the automatic techniques to a more instinctive, personal form, relying more fully on chance and accident. One thread that runs through P."s work is his concern with the mythic which can be seen most clearly in his paintings of the 1940s, among others Pasiphae, Totem and Guardians of the Secret. He painted his 1st 'drip painting' (in which the paint was allowed to fall from the brush or vessel on to a canvas laid on the floor) in 1947 and this led to *Action painting. The form of his very large images was not preconceived and only emerged during the act of execution. ('The painting has a life of its own. I try to let it come through.') His late works — Blue Poles (1953) — although violently executed, result in a lacework of coloured and silver lines of extraordinary delicacy.

Polycleitos (Polycletus). Born in Argos, Polycleitos (c.480-420bc), was a scuiptor and a pupil of Agelades. He wrote The Canon on the harmony of proportions and opposition of forces. His Discophoros (c.460) has both feet firmly on the ground, while the Kyniskos is more typically balanced. with one foot partially raised. Doryphorus was an exploration of the distribution of energy between the limbs, as was his Herakles. The Wounded Amazon (Sciarra version), which he is said to have made for Ephesus in competition with Phidias and Kresilas (c.440), and The Diadoumenos. His final bid to compete with the colossal statues of Phidias was the gold and ivory Hera, roughly 5.5 metres (18 feet) high His statues were widely copied during the late Hellenistic and Roman periods.

Polyptych (Gr. with many folds). Several painted panels, usually of wood, grouped as a single screen, the outer panels often being hinged so that they can fold upon the centre ones. Altarpieces were frequently in the form of p.s.

Pomodoro Arnaldo (1926— ) and his brother Clio (1930- ). Italian sculptors and artist jewellers whose semi-abstract work is distinguished by its high craftsmanship. The former's sculptures are monumental, spherical and columnar public works cast in bronze. The latter's works evolved from designs for jewellery and are made of cast bronze, marble, stone and other materials. Their wide references are to formal tensions of forms in space, derived from the human figure, e.g. Uno (1960), stylized primitivist symbolic representations of natural phenomena, e.g. Sole, elogio del 3 (1973) and Sole deposto II (1974—5), and primitive or pre-classical architecture, e.g. Luogo di misure (1977—80) and Hermes ariete e cilia solare (1984).

Pont-Aven, school of. A group of painters, with *Gaugmn as their inspiration and chief figure, who worked in and around the town of Pont-Aven in Brittany. Gauguin first visited Pont-Aven in 1886, and began to gather disciples on his 2nd visit in 1888, when he met Bernard.

Pontormo Jacopo da, born J. Garrucci (1494—1556/7). Among the earliest and most influential of the Italian *Mannerist painters, P. was named after his birthplace, a village near Empoh, but was trained in the Florentine school — certainly by Andrea del Sarto, and possibly by Leonardo da Vinci and Piero di Cosimo. In 1521 be made his reputation with his lyrical decorations for the Medici villa, Poggio a Caiano, near Florence. Another cycle of frescoes, scenes from the Passion, was painted in 1523. P.'s angular style of draughtsmanship — showing the influences of Michelangelo and Durer's engravings, yet highly original in feeling — and his unusual colour sense are probably best seen in his masterpiece, The Deposition, while a fine example of his Mannerist portraiture is Ltidy with a Lap dog. Rosso Fiorentino was his rival and Bronzino his pupil and follower.

Pop Art. Movement originating in the mid-1950s with the *Independent Group who met at the Institute of Contemporary Art, London. Prominent figures were the critic Lawrence Alloway, who coined the term, the architects P. and H. Snuthson, the architectural historian Reyner Banham, and the artists *Paolozzi and R. *Hamilton. The basic concept was that of mass popular urban culture as the vernacular culture shared by all, irrespective of professional skills. Films, advertising, science fiction, pop music, etc. and U.S. mass-produced consumer goods were taken as the materials of the new art and a new aesthetic or expendability proposed. Similar ideas were being explored in the U.S.A. independently at about the same time. P. a. in all its manifestations was given its greatest impetus in the U.S.A. during the 1960s, where it came as a reaction to * Abstract Expressionism and in fresh response to Dadaist notions. The most important artists in the establishment of U.S. P. a. were *Rauschenberg and *Johns. Other U.S. artists specifically associated with P. a. are *Dine, *Indiana, *Lichtenstein, *Oldenburg, *Rosenquist, *Warhol and *Wesselmann. Artists working in Britain were P. *Blake, *Boshier, *Hockney, A. *Jones and P. *Phillips.

Pop Art. International movement in painting, sculpture and printmaking. The term originated in the mid-1950s at the ICA, London, in the discussions held by the INDEPENDENT GROUP concerning the artefacts of popular culture. This small group included the artists Richard Hamilton and Eduardo Paolozzi as well as architects and critics. Lawrence Alloway (1926–1990), the critic who first used the term in print in 1958, conceived of Pop art as the lower end of a popular-art to fine-art continuum, encompassing such forms as advertising, science-fiction illustration and automobile styling. Hamilton defined Pop in 1957 as: ‘Popular (designed for a mass audience); Transient (short term solution); Expendable (easily forgotten); Low Cost; Mass Produced; Young (aimed at Youth); Witty; Sexy; Gimmicky; Glamorous; and Big Business’. Hamilton set out, in paintings such as £he (1958–61; London, Tate), to explore the hidden connotations of imagery taken directly from advertising and popular culture, making reference in the same work to pin-ups and domestic appliances as a means of commenting on the covert eroticism of much advertising presentation.

Popova Lyubov (1889-1924). Russian painter, the most distinguished painter among Malevich's *Suprematist followers, after the Revolution also a *Constructivist abandoning painting to work as a textile designer in a factory. She also worked for Meyerhold designing sets and costumes. P. studied in Paris under Metzinger and Le Fauconnier in 1912; on her return to Moscow she began contributing Cubist works such as Seated Figure (1915) to the Knave of Diamonds exhibitions. Her 1st abstract works date from 1916; after 1917 many, entitled Architectonic Compositions, show the influence of Malevich and Tatlin.

Poster. Form of graphic art with antecedents in antiquity, in signboards, handbills, playbills, woodcuts, etc. but assuming its modern form and requirements (simple design, bold colours, etc.) with the invention of colour *lithography. Since *Toulouse-Lautrec's famous p.s, many artists (e.g. Chagall, Matisse, Picasso) have designed and executed them, and some (e.g. *McKnight-Kauffer) have specialized in them. The p. is the only form in which the general public have without difficulty accepted such 2Oth-c. artistic developments as Expressionism, Cubism and abstraction.

Post-Impressionism. Term coined in Britain by *Fry to describe the artists exhibiting in an exhibition in the Grafton Galleries in 1910; they included Cezanne, Deram, Matisse, Picasso, Rouault, Seurat, Van Gogh. The term does not imply any similarity of style, although it is true that all these artists reacted against the Impressionist preoccupation with visual appearances.

Postmodernism. Term that gained wide currency in the mid-1970s practice of art and was then also applied to developments of the previous decade in architecture and literature, and in art from *Pop to *Conceptual. Postmodernists challenged what was perceived as modernism's narrowness, dogmatic authoritarianism, its socially distanced and formalist aesthetics, the emphasis on originality and authorship, and the view that art inevitably evolved towards purely formal abstraction. *Duchamp, especially in his *readymades, came to be seen as the forefather of P. For P., reality and its representation (in images or words, as in *allegory) overlap and are not clearly defined; it is representations that are experienced as real, a view derived from the French philosopher Jean Buaudrillard's term, 'simulacrum'. Distinctions between life and art are rejected and art is returned to life. Artistic originality and autonomy are considered irrelevant since images
and symbols lose their fixed meaning when put in different contexts and are *appropriated and recycled irrespective of subject matter and traditional stylistic conventions. Instead, issues of identity, marginalized by modernism, are paramount, as in art that incorporates feminist, racial, gender, sexual and environmental concerns. Revealing the process by which meaning is constructed is called 'deconstruction' and has affinities with psychoanalysis and Structuralism (as defined by the French anthropologist Claude Levi-Strauss) but goes beyond and ultimately rejects Post-Structuralism. Deconstruction particularly challenges received ideas about the importance of creative originality and authorship, and has been most forcefully argued by the French philosopher Jacques Dernda, a contemporary of two other influential French philosophers and cultural critics whose ideas are related, Michel Foucault and the Post-Structuralist Francois Lyotard, as well as the psychoanalyst Jacques Laean. Among a diverse number of P. groups and artists who emerged in the '70s and '80s are *Beuys, H. *Richter, the *Neo-Expressionists, installation, *Performance, *Earth and *Body art, *Arte Povera, *Baldessari, *Levine, *Sherman, *Salle and *Calle.


Term used to characterize developments in architecture and the arts in the 1960s and after, when there was a clear challenge to the dominance of modernism; the term was applied predominantly from the 1970s to architecture and somewhat later to the decorative and visual arts. It was first used as early as 1934 by Spanish writer Federico de Onis, although it was not then used again until Arnold Toynbee’s A Study of History in 1938 (published after World War II); Toynbee and others saw the ‘post-modern’ phenomenon in largely negative terms, as an irrational reaction to modernist rationalism. The term was used sporadically thereafter in the fields of literary criticism and music. In the 1970s, however, it came into wide use in connection with architecture to denote buildings that integrate modernism with a selective eclecticism, often of classical or Neo-classical origin. In painting the term took hold later, peaking in the mid-1980s in the USA to describe work that offered a more biting critique of current cultural values than that offered in architecture. If the attachment of the label itself is ignored, however, the developments may be perceived as continuous with the anti-modernism of the 1960s, which readily related to the growing pluralism in art and architecture that came to be associated with Post-modernism from the early 1980s.

Post-painterly abstraction. Term coined by the U.S. art critic *Greenberg in 1964 to describe the work of certain U.S. artists such as *Kelly, *Louis, *Noland and Olitski, who were then using large fields of pure colour, unmodulated by brushwork. Such work is also sometimes described as *Color-field painting, in spite of the fact that this term also includes an earlier generation of artists such as *Klein, *Newman and *Reinhardt.
Post-painterly Abstraction. Term devised as an exhibition title in 1964 by the critic Clement Greenberg to describe a new trend in American abstract painting that emerged in reaction to Abstract Expressionism. Extending to contemporary art the distinction made by Heinrich Wolfflin between painterly and linear art, Greenberg postulated that the most recent painting, although still owing something to its immediate forebears, was in contrast moving towards a greater linear clarity and/or a physical openness of design.

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