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The term is used to describe a technique and the resulting work in which found objects, newspaper clippings, photographs and other ephemera are stuck together on a piece of paper or canvas or sculpture. It is derived from the French word coller meaning glue. The process itself, however, has evolved from sticking with glue along with technological innovations in digital media and print. The term was coined by both Georges Braque and Pablo Picasso and even though there was an occasional usage by earlier artists and its wide informal use in popular art and craft, it came to be associated with 20th century modern art and appropriated in innovative ways by subsequent art movements.

This sort of an assemblage offered a new perspective on art as it not only blurred the distinction between high and low art but also came to comment on the discontinuity and fragmentariness of modern existence with its serious as well as tongue-in-cheek references.


Further Reading

The Age of Collage: Contemporary Collage in Modern Art edited by D. Busch, R. Klanten and H. Hellige

Derek Gores, collage artwork