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Kristine Stiles

Process of unsticking and ripping through successive layers of glued paper. The term first appeared in print in the Dictionnaire abrégé du surréalisme accompanying the catalogue of the Exposition internationale du surréalisme held at the Galerie Beaux-Arts in Paris in 1938. The technique developed through the use of ...

Article

Mary M. Tinti

Architecture, design and conceptual art partnership. Diller Scofidio + Renfro [Diller + Scofidio] was formed in 1979 by Elizabeth Diller (b Lodz, Poland, 1954) and Ricardo Scofidio (b New York, NY, 1935) as an interdisciplinary design practice based in New York....

Article

Kristine Stiles

Term first used by the critic Lawrence Alloway in 1961 to describe an urban art in which found or ready-made objects and mechanical debris were transformed into paintings, sculptures and environments by welding, collaging, décollaging or otherwise assembling them into new and unusual forms. The name evolved from the phrase ‘junk culture’, which had been used in the late 1950s and early 1960s, particularly in Great Britain and the USA, by writers such as ...

Article

Laser  

Frank Popper

Device used to amplify light to an intense beam of a very pure single colour by stimulated emission of radiation. The theoretical basis for the technique of the laser was calculated by Albert Einstein in 1917, but it was not until 1960 that Theodore H. Maiman created the first active laser, using a synthetic ruby crystal. For practical and economic reasons the pulse ruby lasers were largely replaced by continuous wave gas lasers in their helium-neon, argon ion or krypton argon ion versions. The artistic applications of the laser appeared from ...

Article

Masonry  

Francis Woodman and Jacques Heyman

Assemblage of stones, bricks, or sun-dried mud (adobe), fitted together for construction, with or without mortar.

Francis Woodman

Masonry can be either quarried and artificially shaped (dressed and ashlar; see §II below), or natural (dry-stone and flint walling). Dry-stone walling is an ancient masonry technique, using well-chosen frost-shattered or splintered rocks carefully interlocked. The resulting structures are most frequently used for field walls and crude huts. South Italian ...

Article

Mobile  

Gerhard Graulich

Form of kinetic sculpture, incorporating an element or elements set in motion by natural external forces. The term, which is also sometimes used more loosely to describe sculptural works with the capacity for motorized or hand-driven mechanical movement, was first used by Marcel Duchamp in ...

Article

Neon  

Frank Popper

Term used in its widest meaning to refer to luminous devices containing neon, mercury vapour, argon or other inert gases and their combinations used in electric signs or lamps generally tubular in shape. This extended definition is also applied in an artistic context. In its narrower, more technical sense, neon (from Gr. ...

Article

Sky art  

Astrid A. Hiemer

Term coined by Otto Piene in 1969 and described by him as: ‘The arbitrator between man-made feelings and emotions and yearnings evoked by earth and sky and their overwhelming size and power …. Technology helps to distribute and connect while we keep it from dulling the senses and numbing our imagination’ (see ...

Article

Erika Billeter

Term that gained currency in the late 1960s to describe any form of sculpture made from pliable materials and consequently not absolutely fixed in its shape. As an art form its origins can be traced particularly to the ‘soft sculptures’ devised by Claes Oldenburg as early as ...