Macchia and macchiaioli

A term associated with a group of late 19th-century realist painters from in and around Florenz, Italy. In Italian, Macchia means spot or stain. In practical terms, their spots were often to be found as impressionistic dabs of colour to emphasise patches of chiaroscuro in landscapes. The painters who painted this way were soon called macchiaioli; and subsequently all late 19th and early 20th century Tuscan painters were named accordingly, because of their tendency to bridge realism with what we now call the thinking and style of impressionism.

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