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"Paul Gauguin, "The Yellow Christ (Le Christ jaune)
1889, oil on canvas
"Albright-Knox Art Gallery, "Buffalo, New York

Cloisonnism is a style of "post-Impressionist painting with bold and flat forms separated by dark contours. The term was coined by critic "Edouard Dujardin on the occasion of the "Salon des Indépendants, in March 1888.[1] Artists "Émile Bernard, "Louis Anquetin, "Paul Gauguin, "Paul Sérusier, and others started painting in this style in the late 19th century. The name evokes the technique of "cloisonné, where wires (cloisons or "compartments") are soldered to the body of the piece, filled with powdered glass, and then "fired. Many of the same painters also described their works as "Synthetism, a closely related movement.

In "The Yellow Christ (1889), often cited as a quintessential cloisonnist work, Gauguin reduced the image to areas of single colors separated by heavy black outlines. In such works he paid little attention to classical "perspective and boldly eliminated subtle gradations of color—two of the most characteristic principles of post-"Renaissance painting.

The cloisonnist separation of colors reflects an appreciation for discontinuity that is characteristic of "Modernism.[2]





  1. ^ Dujardin, Édouard: Aux XX et aux Indépendants: le Cloisonismé (sic!), Revue indépendante, Paris, March 1888, pp. 487-492
  2. ^ William R. Everdell, "The First Moderns, Profiles in the Origin of Twentieth-Century Thought University of Chicago Press, 1997 retrieved March 27, 2010

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