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Chiaroscuro

Term describing effects of light and shade in a work of art, especially when there is strong contrast between the two. Sometimes a dramatic effect is created in a painting by a shaft of light, which gives sharp shadows like that given by a spotlight.

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Sir Christopher Wren
by Elisha Kirkall, after Henry Cook (Cooke), after John Closterman
circa 1720-1742
NPG D18735

The Death of the Earl of Chatham
by John Singleton Copley
1779-1781
NPG L146

Joan Collins
by Cornel Lucas
1951
NPG x27871

Christine Keeler
by Lewis Morley
1963
NPG P512(13)

Steve Martland
by Andrew Catlin
June 1989
NPG x35991

Linford Christie
by Alistair Morrison
February 1996
NPG x77035

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