plastic art and plastic arts
- First of all, such uses of "plastic" very rarely refer to art made with petroleum byproducts, but instead to the original meaning of "plasticity or plastic quality" — sculptural, modeled, or malleable. The singular form, "plastic art" generally refers to three-dimensional art, such as sculpture, as distinguished from drawing and painting; also, two-dimensional art which strives for an illusion of depth. The plural form, "plastic arts" generally refers to one or more of the visual arts, which include sculpture, architecture, painting, drawing, and the graphic arts; as distinguished from music, poetry, literature, dance, and theater. The terms "plastic art" and "plastic arts" are used much more by British than by American writers. ArtLex suspects these terms so often confuse readers that it recommends the use of alternatives. Among those, consider visual culture, as well as the older terms art, the arts, artifact, beaux-arts, fine art, applied arts, commercial art, and graphic arts.
Glossary of Art Terms. 2014.
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