Relief  

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

Relief is a sculptural technique. The term relief is from the Latin verb levo, to raise. To create a sculpture in relief is thus to give the impression that the sculpted material has been raised above the background plane. What is actually performed when a relief is cut in from a flat surface of stone or wood is a lowering of the field, leaving the unsculpted parts seemingly raised. The technique thus involves considerable chiselling away of the background, which is a time-consuming exercise with little artistic effect if the lowered background is left plain, as is often the case. On the other hand, a relief saves forming the rear of a subject, and is less fragile and more securely fixed than a sculpture in the round, especially one of a standing figure where the ankles are a potential weak point, especially in stone. In other materials such as metal, clay, plaster stucco, ceramics or papier-mache the form can be just added to or raised up from the background, and monumental bronze reliefs are made by casting.

Notable reliefs

Notable examples of monumental reliefs include:

Smaller-scale reliefs:

See also




Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Relief" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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