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D J to D Z

docent - A trained volunteer who provides educational tours for museum visitors.

A contemporary docent:




see thumbnail to rightA docent leads a discussion about the mural behind him.


Also see preparator and teacher.



documentary art - Any artwork the purpose of which is to present facts objectively, without inserting fictional matter, recording and/or commenting on some content, often political or social, by accumulating factual detail. Many conceptual art installations of the 1970s were overtly documentary — e.g., Post-Partum Project by Mary Kelly (American), the various Reading Rooms by Joseph Kosuth (American, 1945-), Guggenheim Trustees by Hans Haacke (German, 1936-). More common examples: documentary films. Not to be confused with documentation.




see thumbnail to leftRobert Flaherty (American, 1884-1951), Nanook of the North, 1922, 35 mm film, black and white and color tinted, silent, 56 minutes. This is often cited as a pioneering exemplar of documentrary cinema.





see thumbnail to rightMichael Moore (American, contemporary), director and narrator, Fahrenheit 9/11, 2004, 35 mm film, c. 110 minutes. Moore's Web site calls it a "searing examination of the Bush administration's actions in the wake of the tragic events of 9/11." This and others of Moore's movies are typically called documentary films. But makers of documentary works are generally expected to be as objective as possible, and Moore is unappologetic about shaping (by his choice of interviewees, questions to them, narrative, and editing) his works (by his choice of interviewees, questions to them, narrative, and editing) in supporting his opinions. His films might be called editorialized, polemics, or diatribes, but they have also been called this P word — propaganda. At least in part, this is because others promote Moore's films to pursuade audiences to take Moore's opinions. Considering the negative connotations attached to the word "propaganda," people who enjoy such works would naturally prefer to categorize Moore's films as documentary rather than propaganda, wishing to give these films the most positive spin possible. Nevertheless, if Fahrenheit 9/11 merits the use of the P word, Michael Moore is apparently rehabilitating it.



documentation - Textual and/or photographic information that describes a work of art or image, recording its physical characteristics and placing it in context, as in records of works of conceptual art, earth art, or performance art.


see thumbnail aboveRichard Long (English, 1945-), A Hundred Mile Walk, 1971-2, pencil, map, printed text, photographs and labels on board, 21.6 x 48.3 cm, Tate Gallery, London. All of Long's work results from solitary walks he has undertaken in different parts of the world. This work documents the circular route he took on a walk made in December and January of 1971-2, by means of a map showing his location, a photograph of part of the landscape passed through and phrases recording his thoughts and reactions. See earth art and line.

Also see posterity and video.




dodecagon - A closed shape bounded by twelve straight-line segments. The formula with which to find an equilateral dodecagon's area is 11.1961 times the length of one side squared.

Also see circle, dodecahedron, mathematics, polygon, radial, shape, and vertex.



dodecahedron - A polyhedron with twelve pentagonal faces. The regular dodecahedron is one of the five Platonic solids (along with the tetrahedron, hexahedron (cube), octahedron, and icosahedron. The faces of a regular dodecahedron are all regular pentagons.

(pr. DOH-də-kə-HEE-drən)

The plural form can be either dodecahedrons or dodecahedra.

Other resources about cubes:

Also see mathematics, polygon, and vertex.



dolly - A low platform on wheels used to move sculpture or heavy materials.

Also see banker and gantry.




dolmen - Large stones aerial view of Stonehenge(megaliths) standing upright with a horizontal stone balanced upon them (post and lintel). Numerous such structures have survived from Stone Age France and England — for example, at see thumbnail to right Stonehenge, c. 2,500-1,500 BCE, stone, 162 inches high, and located 330 feet above sea level on the chalk downland of Salisbury Plain, about 80 miles west of London near the town of Amesbury. About half of the original monument is missing, but enough remains to provide an idea of what it was once like. It was built in three phases. The first phase saw the digging of the "henge" that encloses the main area in about 2800 BCE, and the first arrangement of stones erected c. 2100 BCE. Once on site, a "sarsen stone" was prepared to accommodate stone lintels along its top surface. It was then dragged until the end was over the opening of the hole. Great levers were inserted under the stone and it was raised until gravity made it slide into the hole. At this point, Stonehengethe stone stood on about a 30° angle from the ground. Ropes were attached to the top and teams of men pulled from the other side to raise it into the full upright position. It was secured by filling the hole at its base with small, round packing stones. At this point, the lintels were lowered into place and secured vertically by mortice and tenon joints and horizontally by tongue and groove joints. It was begun by people of the late Neolithic period and completed by a Celtic people called Beaker Folk for their use of pottery drinking vessels, began to use metal implements and to live in a more communal fashion than their ancestors. The popular story has been that Stonehenge was built by the Druids, but they were Celts present during the much later time of Roman occupation.

Other examples of dolmen:





see thumbnail to leftCeltic Ireland, Ravensdale, Cooley Peninsula, County Louth, The Proleek Dolmen. Three upright stones and a 46 ton capstone mark a 5000 year-old tomb. According to local folklore, the capstone was placed by a giant.




see thumbnail to rightThis is one of more than 4,000 Celtic dolmen found in France — mostly in Brittanny and in southwestern France.


Other resources on dolmen:

Also see cairn, cromlech, Cyclopean, monolith, Seven Wonders of the Ancient World, and Stone Age.



dome - In architecture, a hemispherical [like half a ball] vault or ceiling over a circular opening. Theoretically, it is an arch rotated on its vertical axis. It rises above the central part of a building. Usually it is elevated further by being placed on a circular or many-sided base.

Here are example domes:



Coffered Dome of the Pantheon, Rome, c. 118-128, interior view. see thumbnail to rightAnother view of the interior. See coffer, oculus, and pantheon.




see thumbnail to leftFilippo Brunelleschi (architect, Italian, 1377-1446), Dome of the Cathedral of Florence — "Il Duomo." Its construction began in 1420. Brunelleschi was the first great Italian Renaissance architect. Octagonal and ribbed, it's one of the finest domical constructions in architectural history. Another view of this dome. See lantern.



Donato Bramante (Italian, 1444-1514), Tempietto of San Pietro, Montorio, Rome, Italy, after 1502, bearing masonry.



Andrea Palladio (Italian, 1508-1580), Villa Rotonda (Villa Capra), begun 1567, general view of exterior, Vicenza, Italy.





see thumbnail to rightMughal Emperor Shah Jahan (Indian, reigned 1627-1658), Taj Mahal, 1630-1653, an Islamic tomb in a walled garden built for Shah Jahan's wife Mumatz Mahal [aka Arjuman Banu Begum], of bearing masonry and inlaid marble, with onion-shape domes and flanking towers, in Agra, India, seat of the Mughal Empire. The mausoleum is 57 m (190 ft) square in plan. The central inner dome is 24.5 m (81 feet) high and 17.7 m (58 feet) in diameter, but is surmounted by an outer shell nearly 61 m (200 feet) in height. Sir Banister Fletcher wrote in A History of Architecture, "The interior of the building is dimly lit through pierced marble lattices and contains a virtuoso display of carved marble. Externally the building gains an ethereal quality from its marble facings, which respond with extraordinary subtlety to changing light and weather."




see thumbnail to leftChristopher Wren (English, 1632-1723), St. Paul's Cathedral, London, looking up at the dome from the southeast, 1675-1710.




see thumbnail to rightJohn Plumbe, Jr. (American, 1809-1857) photographer, United States Capitol, Washington, D.C., east front elevation, half plate daguerreotype, c. 1846, Library of Congress, Washington, DC. One of the earliest surviving photographs of the Capitol, Plumbe's elevation shows the building with its old copper-sheathed wooden dome.




see thumbnail to leftR. Buckminster Fuller (American, 1895-1983) architect, Geodesic Dome, 1952, elastic cord and metal, height 20 1/4 inches (51.4 cm), diameter 39 inches (99.1 cm), Museum of Modern Art, NY.



see thumbnail to rightR. Buckminster Fuller, Geodesic Dome, 1967, on the site of the 1967 World's Fair, during which it housed the United States Pavilion. Location: l'Ile-Ste-Hélène, Montreal, Canada. As of the year 2000, about 300,000 such structures of various sizes were scattered throughout the world, most such polyhedrons were built in the 1960s when interest in them was at its peak.




see thumbnail to leftAndy Goldsworthy (English, 1956-), Stone Houses, 2004, two monumental domes constructed of wood (split rails from New England agricultural sources) and stone (from Scotland), each 18 feet in height and 24 feet in diameter, Metropolitan Museum, NY. This installation is in the museum's Roof Garden, an outdoor space for sculpture with a great view of the city. The museum says the work was "inspired by Central Park and its architectural backdrop. Inherent in these seemingly simple forms are the implicit power, beauty, mystery, and elemental aspects of nature, marked by the passage of time and by human contact." See earth art and sculpture garden.


Also see boss, coffer, convex, di sotto in sù, finial, fish-eye lens, oculus, pendentive, and tower.



dominant - The part of a composition that is emphasized, has the greatest visual weight, the most important, powerful, or has the most influence. A certain color can be dominant, and so can an object, line, shape, or texture.

Also see contrast and focal point.



donation and donor - A donation is a voluntary transfer of an object from an individual or a business — a donor — to an institution. Every museum seeks donations. Because U.S. government funding for the arts has been under siege lately, many nonprofit institutions have become more reliant upon the financial support of individual and corporate donors.

Also see bad-debt art, collection, deaccession, motivation, patron, posterity, and registrar.



Doric - The earliest of the orders of classical architecture.


A diagram of the Doric order and a diagram of the Ionic order.



see thumbnail to rightIctinus and Callicrates with Phidias (Greek), The Parthenon, 477-438 BCE, a temple dedicated to the goddess Athena, of bearing masonry, cut stone, in a style called the Doric order, on the historic acropolis of Athens.


Related site:

Also see abacus, architrave, capital, classical orders, column, Corinthian, cornice, echinus, entablature, frieze, Greek art, Ionic, metope, Roman art, shaft, stylobate, and triglyph.



dot - May refer to the most fundamental mark, one level more fundamental than a line. And it may refer to a particular point, or location. Something having many dots has been said to be "punctuated." When an area is occupied by dots, spots or speckles of many colors, it may be described as variegated. Also, "dot" is a computer term for either a pixel or that punctuation also called a period or point.




see thumbnail to rightAbelardo Morell (American, born Cuba, 1948-), Leaning Tower of Pisa Illustration for the Blind, 2000, Morell's photograph of a book illustration intended to be "seen" by a blind person. This picture and the Braille text that is part of it is comprised entirely of embossed dots. See campanile.




see thumbnail to leftJim Hodges (American, 1957-), Dot, 1999, wood and metal panel, ceramic sockets, light bulbs, 31 1/2 x 31 1/2 x 5 inches, Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art, Kansas City, MO. See light.

Also see blot, DPI (dots per inch), glitter, halftone, moiré, pointillism, punch, and stipple.



dotaku - In Japanese tradition, a ceremonial bronze bell which was kept buried in hillside santuaries away from everyday village life, and brought out only for use in certain agricultural rituals. Dotaku and their molds have been found in the Kinai (Kyoto-Osaka) district and the coastal region of the Inland Sea. Dotaku are classified chronologically into four groups, according to the styles of their handles. Though originally made to suspend the bells, handles became less functional and more ornamental in later years.



see thumbnail to rightJapanese, Dotaku, Yayoi Period, 2nd-1st century BCE, bronze bell, height 42.7 cm, reportedly excavated in Kagawa Prefecture, Tokyo National Museum. Japanese authorities consider this a "National Treasure."


Also see Japanese art.




double-exposure - In photography, a technique that combines images made at different moments in time.




double loading - Also called side loading; loading a brush with two colors side by side. This is a technique typical of tole and other kinds of decorative painting. In order to double load, use a paint of creamy consistency, and drag one edge of the brush through the lighter color as many times as needed to fill that edge with color; then stroke the clean edge of the brush through the darker color in the same manner. Once the brush is loaded this way, blend the colors at the center of the brush by stroking on the palette. Using this technique, each brushstroke (application of color) deposits a gradation of the two blended colors.

Related link:

Also see folk art.




dovetailed - A means of joining two pieces of wood or a thickness of some other rigid material. The pieces are shaped in such a way that they resemble doves whose rows of tails interlock.

[Are doves' tails shaped like this?
Has anyone actually seen doves put their tales together this way?
What a poetic word! -MD]



dowel or doweling - A length of round wood, either as it might naturally be formed or as it can be turned. Also, to insert such round lengths of wood as pegs into drilled holes in place of nails, bolts or screws to secure a joint between pieces of material. In ancient architecture, a wooden or metal pin placed between stones of different courses to prevent shifting.

Also see circle, clamp, cylinder, and masonry.



DPI or dpi - Dots per inch. A measurement of the scanning resolution of an image or the quality of an output device. Expresses the number of dots a printer can print per inch, or monitor can display, both horizontally and vertically. A 600-dpi printer can print 360,000 (600 x 600) dots on one square inch of paper.

Related link:

Also see aspect ratio, moiré, and monitor.



draftsman - An artist who draws sketches and plans drafting tableof buildings, machinery, and manufactured products. Most contemporary drafting is done digitally, using computers, but for generations, draftsmen drew upon see thumbnail to rightdrafting tables, using such analog tools as rulers, T square, triangles, compasses, and French curves.



see thumbnail to leftAmerican, Become a Draftsman, Enjoy a Real Job in Industry, advertisement for a correspondence course, October 1937, Modern Mechanix magazine.


Also see architect and mechanical drawing.



draftsmanship - Skill in drawing.

Also see draftsman and pencil.



dragging - Applying relatively dry oil paints lightly over a surface, creating an area of broken color — the new color having attached to the high spots but not to the low, so that irregular portions of the undercolor remain exposed. Also known as scruffing.

Also see cissing, dry brush painting, and overpainting.



drama - See theater.



drape mold - Forms on which a piece (often a slab) of plastic material such as clay, wax, or glass can be shaped. Types of drape molds are hump, slump and press molds. The example shown to the right is a hemispheric hump mold made of plaster. square slumpThe example to the left is a square plaster slump mold. A clay bowl, for instance, might be formed either by draping a slab of clay onto a hump mold or into a slump mold. In order to better separate the surface of the mold from that of the material shaped, you may need to employ a release agent. This might be a powder, an oil, a sheet of cellophane or tissue paper.



drapery - Cloth or a representation of cloth arranged to hang in folds. This may be a curtain or a costume, or fabric used as a cover or as an object arranged as a passage in a composition. Just as the study of various means to representing the human figure is essential in the development of an artist's skills, so is the study of ways to represent drapery. Each is composed of curving surfaces reflecting gradations of colors. Each is essentially a set of loose folds of varying sizes, among which are occasional creases. Drapery varies amongst fabrics of different weights, textures, colors, and patterns, either hanging straight, disturbed by wind, or by parts of a body or an object in some relationship to it.

Examples of drapery in art:

Egypt, c. 1365-1349 BCE (reign of Amenhotep IV-Akhenaton, 18th dynasty), Body of Nefertiti (?), crystallised red sandstone, height 29 cm, Louvre. See Egyptian art and torso.




see thumbnail to rightGerard David (Netherlandish, born about 1455, died 1523), The Rest on the Flight into Egypt, c. 1512-15, oil on wood panel, 20 x 17 inches (50.8 x 43.2 cm), Metropolitan Museum of Art, NY. See chiaroscuro, Madonna, Northern Renaissance, and vignette.






see thumbnail to leftAlbrecht Dürer (German, 1471-1528), Sechs Kissen (Six Pillows), 1493, ink on paper, 276 x 202 cm. Dürer produced this wonderful drawing when he was twenty-two years old. See hatching and cross-hatching and Northern Renaissance. There is Andreas Freise's (German, contemporary), 2001 95-line ascii version of this picture. (If you don't find it at that first link, try it here). Email Andreas Freise, Universitaet Hannover.







see thumbnail to rightAlbrecht Dürer, The Walk, c. 1496-1498, 195 x 120 cm, engraving, Hermitage Museum, St. Petersburg, Russia. See costume.






see thumbnail to leftLeonardo da Vinci (Italian, 1452-1519), Study of drapery of a woman kneeling to left, c. 1477, silverpoint on red surface heightened with white, 25.8 x 19.5 cm, Corsini Gallery, Rome. See Renaissance and study.





see thumbnail to rightLeonardo da Vinci, Study for legs of seated figure, c. 1477, brush on linen heightened with white, 26.6 x 23.4 cm, Corsini Gallery, Rome.




see thumbnail to leftJan (or Johannes) Vermeer (Dutch, Delft, 1632-1675), The Glass of Wine, c. 1661/62, oil on canvas, Gemäldegalerie, Berlin. See Baroque and Dutch art.






see thumbnail to rightEtienne-Maurice Falconet (French, 1716-1791), Winter, 1771, marble, height 135 cm, Hermitage Museum, St. Petersburg, Russia. See Neoclassicism and Rococo.




see thumbnail to leftJohn Singleton Copley (American, 1738-1815), Drapery Study for "The Portrait of Mary and Elizabeth Royall", c. 1758, graphite and white chalk on gray-brown laid paper, approximate: 25.2 x 38.1 cm (9 7/8 x 15 inches), National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC.




see thumbnail to rightJean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres (French, 1780-1867), Princesse de Broglie, 1851-1853, oil on canvas, 47 3/4 x 35 3/4 inches (121.3 x 90.8 cm), Metropolitan Museum of Art, NY. See Neoclassicism and portrait.








see thumbnail to leftAgathon Léonard (French, 1841-1923) for Sèvres, Royal Porcelain Factory, Dancing Figure from the Table Centrepiece 'Dance with Scarves', 1900, bisque porcelain, height 47.5 cm, Hermitage Museum, St. Petersburg, Russia. This figure is one of fourteen in a set of female figures dancing and playing music. See Art Nouveau.



Henri Matisse (French, 1869-1954), The Yellow Curtain (Le Rideau jaune), c. 1915, oil on canvas, 57 1/2 x 38 1/8 inches (146 x 97 cm), Museum of Modern Art, NY.





see thumbnail to leftClaudio Bravo (Chilean, 1936-), White Cloth, 1991, black conté on paper, 34.9 x 27.9 cm, Ubicación Colección Particular. See trompe l'oeil.





see thumbnail to rightClaudio Bravo, Neptuno (Blue), 1998, lithograph, image: 30.7 x 23 inches, sheet: 38.2 x 29.5 inches, published by Marlborough Graphics, NY. This is one in a series of six lithographs, called "Demi Gods": Venus (Black), Vesta (Sanguine), Ceres (Sepia), Eros (Red), Neptuno (Blue), and Flora (Green). See trompe l'oeil.



see thumbnail to leftLia Cook (American, 1942-), Drapery Frieze: After Leonardo, 1992, linen, rayon, and acrylic; dyed and pressed, 65 x 240 inches (6 panels), collection of the artist. See after and frieze.


Also see elegance, mannequin, and textile.








drawknife or drawtool - A metal blade with a wooden handle at both ends used to strip wood. Draw knives are made in various sizes and can be obtained with curved as well as the more common straight blades.

Also see spokeshave.



dress - To give the final texture to a hard medium, especially wood or stone, with chisels, hammers, points, etc.

Also see costume, drove, and tooth.



drill - A tool that bores a hole when revolved. In the most primitive examples it is revolved between the palms; then it was operated by means of a bow, and later also with a brace. The cutting is generally achieved by a metal point or bit, but in some cases the point of the drill is used with abrasives. There are many types of contemporary drills, including those that bore holes by both rotating abrasion and repeated blows. A drill press is a powered vertical drilling machine in which the point is pressed to the work by hand lever or automatically.

Also see twist drill and wood.



droit moral - This French term for "moral right" refers particularly to certain rights which all civilizations should recognize are held by those who create intellectual properties — artists (or their estates). These include artists' rights to:

  1. Attribution — the right to be identified as the creator of a work
  2. Disclosure — the right to decide when and where to publish the work
  3. Withdrawal — the right to withdraw a work from circulation
  4. Integrity — the right to preserve the integrity of the work

Discussions of droit moral eventually turn to the extent to which moral rights should be tied to monetary rights, and the extent to which moral rights should be alienable. The concept of droit moral is the basis for all copyright laws. The Berne Convention is the premiere treaty governing international copyrights. Almost every major developed country has signed on to this treaty. An important variation from the Berne Convention: France's (and some other countrys') laws go farther than those of the US (and some other countries) in holding that each and every time a work is purchased, a share of monies paid should go to the artist.

(French pr. dwah moh-rahl)

Related resource:




dromos - The passage to a beehive tomb.




drove - In carving stone, a flat chisel with a broad head generally used only for rough hewing. Also, a stone surface dressed with such a chisel.

Also see claw chisel and tools.




drum scanner - A high-quality image-capture device. The image to be captured is wrapped around a drum that spins very fast while a light source scans it to capture a digital version of the image.

Also see scanner.



dry brush - Applying relatively dry inks or waterpaints lightly over a surface, creating an area of broken color — the new color having attached to the high spots but not to the low, so that traces of the paper or undercolor remain exposed. This may be done by holding the brush so that the side of its bristles lie flat against the paper, or by pulling it rapidly across the surface. In oil painting, dragging stroke or scruffing is the name given to this effect. In Japanese art tradition, kasure are calligraphic dry brush strokes.

Also see gouache, marbling, scumble, tempera, and watercolor.



dry foot - To keep the foot of a piece of ceramic work clear of glaze. Keeping glaze from the underside of ceramic objects allows them to be fired without fusing to the shelves they sit on. An alternative is to glaze those undersides, but place them on stilts or triangles (kiln furniture placed under ceramic wear) that leave litle or no mark on any surface they touch.



dry mount - A mounting technique in which film is applied in a pressing machine with heat in order to adhere one flat surface to another.

Also see photography and temperature.







dry transfer graphics - A medium primarily for graphic designers, dry transfer graphics are manufactured graphic elements a designer can transfer — remove — from a transparent backing sheet, and reattach to a paper or other smooth surface by pressing and rubbing them, either wholly or in pieces — thus earning the nickname "rub-downs." Dry transfer graphics offer a complete system, providing a way to produce high quality artwork in minutes. The kinds of dry transfer graphics available include lettering, lines, colors, shades, textures, patterns, symbols, and signs. These sheets can be purchased from local art supply dealers, and online. Letraset, one of the major manufacturers of dry transfer graphics, offers them online. Letraset currently offers about twenty stock typefaces and a custom service for three-dimensional work, mockups, etc., along with drawing and charting tapes, adhesive backed vinyl lettering, and other products. This technology was much more commonly used in the twenty years before the arrival of computer graphics, but these design tools can still provide creative solutions to graphic designers.

Also see font, graphic design, logo, lorem ipsum, and pasteup.




Duco or DUCO - A trademark of DuPont (E. I. du Pont de Nemours Company) for a number of products, including paints and adhesives. Artists including David Alfaro Siqueiros (Mexican, 1896-1974) have used an industrial paint product called Duco, also known as pyroxilin. In 1924, DuPont introduced Duco — also described as a fast-drying nitrocellulose lacquer — DuPont calls it "the first sprayable automobile body topcoat." Before DuPont introduced Duco, "it used to take weeks to paint a car by brush." [Ed. note: Duco may also refer to other DuPont products, including the adhesive trademarked as Duco Cement. Do you know about Duco? Send info.]

(pr. DOO-koh)

An example:

David Alfaro Siqueiros (Mexican, 1896-1974), La Colina de los Muertos, 1944, Duco on board, 37 1/4 x 27 inches (94.6 x 68.5 cm), Santa Barbara, CA. Siqueiros first employed this paint medium in 1933. See Mexican art.



ductile - A quality ascribed to metals which can be easily molded, or easily shaped — capable of being hammered thin, or drawn into wire for instance.

(pr. DUK-təl)

Also see malleable, plasticity and tensile strength.



duecento - Italian, literally "two hundred," it refers to the 1200s — the thirteenth century, especially in Italian art.

(pr. doo-ay-CHAYN-toh)

Italian Terms for the Centuries
Italian term Numerically English term
thirteenth century
fourteenth century
fifteenth century
sixteenth century
seventeenth century
eighteenth century
nineteenth century
twentieth century
twenty-first century



dummy - A hammer with a rounded head, usually of iron, for striking stone carving tools.

Also see greeking, mannequin, model, and placeholder.



dun - Dull grayish brown; dust-colored.



duodecimo -A book or manuscript of the next size smaller than an octavo. Duodecimoo is abbreviated 12mo, sometimes pronounced "twelve-mo." The next smaller size is sextodecimo.

Also see bookbinding, folio, quarto, sextodecimo, signature, tricesimo-segundo, and vicesimo-quarto.



Dutch art



DWM - Dead white male. This is a derogatory reference to the study of the humanities as a Eurocentric canon made up only of the privileged and the powerful. People oppose this by calling for the inclusion of women, non-whites and the dispossessed. Sometimes referred to as dead white European male.

Also see death, feminism and feminist art, gender issues, multiculturalism, xenophilia, and xenophobia.



dye and dyestuff - A dye is a colorant or pigment that dissolves completely, and is translucent. Textile fibers and fabrics are typically dyed in vats of the stuff. Because dyes are mixed with liquids just before their use, commercially  produced dyes are highly concentrated. Natural dyes have been derived from a wide range of plant and animal sources, and are sometimes referred to as dyestuff. POISONOUS!Dyes color by penetrating substances, in contrast to drawing and painting colors, which must simply adhere to surfaces. There are many types of dyes, varying in their effects, the means of their use, and permanence.

Many dyes are toxic, so be sure to read the warnings below as well as those on labels. Use caution!


Dye powders are very fine, and therefore dangerous if inhaled. WEAR PROTECTIVE CLOTHING!They should be mixed when wholly immersed in water oWEAR A DUST MASK!r, if this is not possible, wear a dust mask or respirator. Wear heavy-duty rubber gloves to avoid skin contamination. Do not use cooking utensils, because they may retain potentially hazardous amounts of chemicals. Wear personal protective clothing, and do not eat, drink or smoke in a dyeing area. Only soap and water should be used to remove splashes from the skin, because chemical substances such as bleach or potassium mangate might break down the dyes into hazardous substances.

Direct dyes (aka direct benzidine-type dyes) are a component of all-purpose dyes. These may be toxic.

Acid dyes are used for silk and wool, and are probably the least hazardous.

Basic dyes, used for wool, silk and some synthetics, may cause allergic reactions.

Procion dyes are also known as fiber-reactive or cold water dyes. Reactive dyes are extremely reactive chemical compounds and are capable of reacting with body tissue. The respiratory tract is particularly sensitive to reactive dyes and allergic responses may occur. Symptoms may seem like hay fever or asthma, accompanied by swollen eyes.

Synthetic mordant dyes may be used in dyeing wool. Alum (potassium aluminium sulphate) salts of tin or iron should be used instead of more hazardous mordant salts, the most hazardous of which is potassium dichromate. Avoid other metal salts, including chromium cobalt and copper, because they may be both toxic and corrosive.

The constituent materials of azoic dyes, 'fast bases' (fast salts) and napthol or naphthalene, are highly reactive chemical compounds capable of causing dermatitis and other skin disorders.


Also see alizarin, batik, blot, die, eyedropper, fluorescent colors, mortar and pestle, process, and stain.



dynamic range - The color depth (or possible pixel values) for a digital image. The number of possible colors or shade of gray that can be included in a particular image. 8-bit images can represent as many as 256 colors; 24-bit image can represent approximately 16 million colors.



dyslexia - A lack of ability to read, often characterized by reversals. To a dyslexic person, a printed page may appear to be a jumble of incoherent data. Dyslexia is a common learning disability. The adjectival form is dyslexic.

(pr. diss-LEK-see-ə)





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