Skip to main content
Humanities LibreTexts

2.5: Before You Move On

  • Page ID
  • Key Concepts

    Visual art can be divided into dimensional categories: two-dimensional, three-dimension- al, and four-dimensional art. Each category has unique and specific approaches and materials. Two-dimensional art consists of drawing, painting, and printmaking. Three-dimensional art con- sists of sculpture, including installation, and kinetic art. Four-dimensional or time-based art in- cludes video and performance and depends on the use of technology and the passage of time for its effect. Time-based art has grown today to encompass digital art, computer animation, interac- tive art, video games, virtual reality, robotics, and 3D printing.

    The elements and principles of design are the components and their organization within visu- al art. Line, shape, mass/volume, perspective, texture, and color are the primary elements of de- sign. Time is a recently recognized additional element of design. Principles of design include unity and variety, scale and proportion, balance, emphasis and movement, and rhythm and repetition.

    In this chapter we have also outlined many of the materials and processes used in creating art. In Chapter 3 Significance of Material Used in Art, we will examine the impact and meaning of substances employed to create works of art. In Chapter 4 Describing Art: Formal Analysis, Types and Styles of Art, we will utilize our understanding of materials and processes, and elements and principles of design to describe and explore meaning in art.

    Test Yourself

    1. Historically, the term fine art was limited to mean painting, architecture, and sculpture. Today, other approaches to the production of art objects have been discovered and exploited. This process of evolution has had both drawbacks and advantages. Discuss.
    2. “____________-dimensional art occurs on flat surfaces, like paper, canvas, or even cave walls.”
    3. Art can be broken down into Form and _______________
    4. “To __________________ an object is to observe its appearance and transfer that observation to a set of marks.”
    5. “For the most part, the pigments or coloring agents in paints remain the same. The thing that distinguishes one kind of painting from another is the ____________.”
    6. The difference between open and closed sculptural forms is that closed forms are surrounded by ____________, while open forms are penetrated by it.
    7. Calligraphy is defined as “_____________ writing.”
    8. Perspective in art is the _________________ of space on a flat surface.
    9. The three main cues to the illusion of space on a flat surface are:
    10. The five elements of design mentioned in the text are:
      1. __________________________
      2. __________________________
      3. __________________________
      4. __________________________
      5. __________________________
    11. The text mentions several principles of design. List and Describe three of them.

      Principle of Design:


      a. _________________________ _________________________
      b. _________________________ _________________________
      c. _________________________ _________________________
    12. The unique property of Kinetic sculpture is: ___________________________
    13. “The Fauves were a group of artists in the early twentieth century who used ____________ color.”
    14. Suggest one potential reason for the use of a monochromatic color scheme, a complementary color scheme, and an analogous color scheme.
      1. Monochromatic_______________________________________________
      2. Complementary_______________________________________________
      3. Analagous ___________________________________________________
    • Was this article helpful?