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A pastiche combining elements of two paintings (""original 1 and ""original 2), using "Photoshop

A pastiche is a work of "visual art, literature, theatre, or music that "imitates the style or character of the work of one or more other artists.[1] Unlike "parody, pastiche celebrates, rather than mocks, the work it imitates.[2]

The word pastiche is a French "cognate of the Italian noun pasticcio, which is a "pâté or pie-filling mixed from diverse ingredients.[1][3] Metaphorically, pastiche and "pasticcio describe works that are either composed by several authors, or that incorporate stylistic elements of other artists' work. Pastiche is an example of "eclecticism in art.

"Allusion is not pastiche. A literary allusion may refer to another work, but it does not reiterate it. Moreover, allusion requires the audience to share in the author's cultural knowledge.[4] Both allusion and pastiche are mechanisms of "intertextuality.


By art[edit]


In literature usage, the term denotes a "literary technique employing a generally light-hearted tongue-in-cheek imitation of another's style; although jocular, it is usually respectful.["citation needed]

For example, many stories featuring "Sherlock Holmes, originally penned by "Arthur Conan Doyle, have been written as pastiches since the author's time.[5][6] "Ellery Queen and "Nero Wolfe are other popular subjects of mystery parodies and pastiches.[7][8]

A similar example of pastiche is the posthumous continuations of the "Robert E. Howard stories, written by other writers without Howard's authorization. This includes the "Conan the Barbarian stories of "L. Sprague de Camp and "Lin Carter. "David Lodge's novel "The British Museum Is Falling Down ("1965) is a pastiche of works by "Joyce, "Kafka, and "Virginia Woolf. In 1991 "Alexandra Ripley wrote the novel "Scarlett, a pastiche of "Gone with the Wind, in an unsuccessful attempt to have it recognized as a "canonical sequel.

In 2017, John Banville published Mrs. Osmond, a sequel to Henry James's The Portrait of a Lady, written in a style similar to that of James.


"Charles Rosen has characterized "Mozart's various works in imitation of "Baroque style as pastiche, and "Edvard Grieg's "Holberg Suite was written as a conscious homage to the music of an earlier age. Some of "Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky's works, such as his "Variations on a Rococo Theme and "Serenade for Strings, employ a poised "classical" form reminiscent of 18th-century composers such as "Mozart (the composer whose work was his favorite).[9] Perhaps one of the best examples of pastiche in modern music is that of "George Rochberg, who used the technique in his String Quartet No. 3 of 1972 and Music for the Magic Theater. Rochberg turned to pastiche from "serialism after the death of his son in 1963.

""Bohemian Rhapsody" by "Queen is unusual as it is a pastiche in both senses of the word, as there are many distinct styles imitated in the song, all "hodge-podged" together to create one piece of music.[10] A similar earlier example is ""Happiness is a Warm Gun" by "The Beatles. One can find musical "pastiches" throughout the work of the American composer "Frank Zappa.

A pastiche Mass is a musical "Mass where the constituent movements come from different Mass settings. Most often this convention has been chosen for concert performances, particularly by "early-music ensembles. Masses are composed of movements: "Kyrie, "Gloria, "Credo, "Sanctus, "Agnus Dei; for example, the "Missa Solemnis by "Beethoven and the "Messe de Nostre Dame by "Guillaume de Machaut. In a pastiche Mass, the performers may choose a Kyrie from one composer, and a Gloria from another; or choose a Kyrie from one setting of an individual composer, and a Gloria from another.

Musical theatre[edit]

In musical theatre pastiche is often an indispensable tool for evoking the sounds of a particular era for which a show is set. For the 1971 musical "Follies, a show about a reunion of performers from a musical "revue set between the World Wars, "Stephen Sondheim wrote over a dozen songs in the style of Broadway songwriters of the 1920s and 1930s. Sondheim imitates not only the music of composers such as "Cole Porter, "Irving Berlin, "Jerome Kern, and "George Gershwin but also the lyrics of writers such as "Ira Gershwin, "Dorothy Fields, "Otto Harbach, and "Oscar Hammerstein II. For example, Sondheim notes that the torch song ""Losing My Mind" sung in the show contains "near-stenciled rhythms and harmonies" from the Gershwins' ""The Man I Love" and lyrics written in the style of Dorothy Fields.[11] Examples of musical pastiche also appear in other Sondheim shows including "Gypsy, "Saturday Night, and "Anyone Can Whistle.[12]


Pastiche can also be a "cinematic device whereby filmmakers pay "homage to another filmmaker's style and use of "cinematography, including camera angles, "lighting, and "mise en scène. A film's writer may also offer a pastiche based on the works of other writers (this is especially evident in historical films and "documentaries but can be found in "non-fiction "drama, "comedy and "horror films as well). A major filmmaker, "Quentin Tarantino, often uses various plots, characteristics and themes from many lesser-known films to create his films. He has openly stated that "I steal from every single movie ever made."[13]

In cinema, the influence of "George Lucas' "Star Wars films (spawning their own pastiches, such as the 1983 3D film "Metalstorm: The Destruction of Jared-Syn) can be regarded as a function of "postmodernity.[14][15]


In discussions of "urban planning, the term "pastiche" may describe developments as imitations of the building styles created by major "architects: with the implication that the derivative work is unoriginal and of little merit, and the term is generally attributed without reference to its urban context. Many post-war European developments can in this way be described as pastiches of the work of architects and planners such as "Le Corbusier or "Ebenezer Howard. The term itself is not pejorative,[16] however "Alain de Botton describes pastiche as "an unconvincing reproduction of the styles of the past".[17][18]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Roland Greene; Stephen Cushman; Clare Cavanagh; Jahan Ramazani; Paul F. Rouzer; Harris Feinsod; David Marno; Alexandra Slessarev, eds. (2012). The Princeton Encyclopedia of Poetry and Poetics. p. 1005. "ISBN "0-691-15491-0. 
  2. ^ Hoestery, Ingeborg (2001). Pastiche: Cultural Memory in Art, Film, Literature. Bloomington: "Indiana University Press. p. 1. "ISBN "978-0-253-33880-8. "OCLC 44812124. Retrieved 2 August 2013. 
  3. ^ Harper, Douglas. "pastiche". "Online Etymology Dictionary. Retrieved 2013-08-02. 
  4. ^ Abrams, Meyer Howard; Harpham, Geoffrey (2009). A Glossary of Literary Terms. "ISBN "1-4130-3390-3. 
  5. ^ Lopresti, Rob (2009-08-12). "Pastiche Nuts". Tune It Or Die!. Criminal Brief. Retrieved 2010-01-10. 
  6. ^ Lundin, Leigh (2007-07-15). "When Good Characters Go Bad". ADD Detective. Criminal Brief. Retrieved 2010-01-10. 
  7. ^ Andrews, Dale (2008-10-28). "The Pastiche". Mystery Masterclass. Criminal Brief. Retrieved 2010-01-10. 
  8. ^ Ritchie, James; Tog; Gleason, Bill; Lopresti, Rob; Andrews, Dale; Baker, Jeff (2009-12-29). "Pastiche vs. fan fiction. Dividing line?". The Mystery Place. New York: Ellery Queen, Alfred Hitchock, Dell Magazines. Retrieved 2010-01-10. 
  9. ^ * Brown, David, "Tchaikovsky, Pyotr Ilyich." In The New Grove Encyclopedia of Music and Musicians (London: MacMillan, 1980), 20 vols., ed. Sadie, Stanley. "ISBN "0-333-23111-2. 18:628
  10. ^ Baker, Roy Thomas (October 1995). "AN INVITATION TO THE OPERA". Sound on Sound. Retrieved 2010-09-29. 
  11. ^ Stephen Sondheim, "Follies" Finishing the Hat (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 2010), p. 235.
  12. ^ Stephen Sondheim, "Follies", Finishing the Hat (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 2010), p.200.
  13. ^ Debruge, Peter (7 October 2013). "Quentin Tarantino: The Great Recycler". 
  14. ^ (Jameson, 1991)
  15. ^ (Sandoval, Chela. Methodology of the Oppressed. Minneapolis,MN: University of Minnesota Press, 2000)
  16. ^ Jamses Stevens Curl, "Oxford Dictionary of Architecture", 2006, p562.
  17. ^ "Alain de Botton: The Perfect Home". "Channel 4. 
  18. ^ "The Perfect Home". "Channel 4. 

Further reading[edit]

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