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Plein-air
painting in the outdoors to directly capture the effects of light and atmosphere on a given object
Pointillism
a painting technique that uses small dots of color that are combined by the eye at a given distance
Polyptych
a many-paneled altarpiece
Porcelain
a ceramic made from clay that when fired in a kiln produces a product that is hard, white, brittle, and shiny
Portal
a doorway, In medieval art they can be significantly decorated
Positivism
a theory that expresses that all knowledge must come from proven ideas based on science or scientific theory philosophy, promoted by French philosopher Auguste Comte
Post-and-lintel
a method of construction with two posts supporting a horizontal beam, called a lintel
Poussinistes
admirers and imitators of Poussin; they felt that his mastery of drawing, composition, and emotional restraint were superior
Rubenistes
admirers and imitators of Rubens; they felt that his use of color, rich textures, and highly charged emotions were superior
Predella
the base of an altarpiece that is filled with small paintings, often narrative scenes
Propylaeum
a gateway leading to a Greek temple
Psaltar
a book containing the Psalms, or sacred sung poems, of the Bible
Pueblo
a communal village of flat-roofed structures of many stories that are stacked in terraces. They are made of stone or adobe
Puja
a Hindu prayer ritual
Pylon
a monumental gateway to an Egyption temple marked by two flat, sloping walls between which is a smaller entrance
Qiblah
the direction toward Mecca which Muslims face in prayer
Quadro riportato
wall mural that is executed on a curved ceiling vault; viewers must stand in a particular spot in order for it to appear right side up
Di sotto in su
ceiling paintings in which the figures seem to be hovering above the viewers, often looking down at them
Quattrocento
the 1400s, or fifteenth century, in Italian art
Quoins
an exterior angle on the facade of a building that has large dressed stone forming a decorative contrast with the wall
Ready-made
a commonplace object selected and exhibited as a work of art
Regionalism
an American art movement from the early twentieth century that emphasized Midwestern rural life in a direct style
Relief sculpture
sculpture which projects from a flat background
Bas-relief
a very shallow relief sculpture
Relinquary
a vessel for holding a sacred relic, often taking the shape of the object they held. Precious metals and stones were the common material