wax painting

(redirected from wax paintings)
Also found in: Dictionary.

wax painting:

see encausticencaustic,
painting medium in which the binder for the pigment is wax or wax and resin. Examples of encaustic tomb portraits from Roman Egypt bear witness to the durability of the medium, which is thought to have been widely used in ancient times.
..... Click the link for more information.

Wax Painting


a painting technique that uses beeswax as a binder. The limited chemical activity and moisture resistance of beeswax permit paintings done in wax to retain the initial freshness of their color and the density and texture of the color layer for centuries.

Wax painting was used in ancient Egypt to paint temple facades as early as the 14th century B.C. In ancient Greece, technology of the most durable kind of wax painting by the heat method (encaustic, from the Greek enkaio —I burn) was developed by the fifth century B.C.; strongly heated wax paints were applied to a section of the base that was heated by a white-hot bronze shovel. According to Pliny the Elder, Zeuxis and Parrhasius painted in this method (their works have not been preserved). Fayumic portraits (first century B.C. to the fourth century A.D.) and Byzantine icons (prior to the 12th century) were done with wax paints in which the encaustic paints were gradually replaced by wax paints on a turpentine base (known as the cold method) and by wax tempera (emulsions with an admixture of volatile oils), less durable but not so complicated. At present, wax painting is used mainly to repair worn-out paint layers and to fix them in restoration work.


Shmidt, G. Tekhnika antichnoi freski i enkaustiki. Moscow, 1936.
Kudriavtsev, E. V. Tekhnika restavratsii kartin. Moscow, 1948.
Khvostenko, V. V. Tekhnika enkaustiki. Moscow, 1956.
Kiplik, D. I. Tekhnika zhivopisi. Moscow-Leningrad, 1960.
References in periodicals archive ?
Edward's original wax paintings and sculptures will be on display at the Howard Gardens campus where the Art and Design Degree show is open from today until Friday, June 15, from 10am to 8pm.
I had been working on wax paintings for the previous few years, and I guess I wanted to show them first.
All these plate and wax paintings had been running alongside one another.
Pincus Witten also noted that Benglis's wax paintings made of long vertical forms were directly related to the body and the association of the artist's body with the sculpture (53).
Two other paintings in the exhibition, one a forest scene, the other a kind of closeup or detail of it, use oil on canvas as if to contradict the accumulated effects of the wax paintings. The former works are like throwaways, dashed off in a series of gestures and strokes that emphasize the idea of process as an immediate rather than an attenuated activity.