Fresco buono = good (real) fresco. The greatest and most beautiful wall paintings are frescoes, but their magnificence is more due to the genius of their creators than to the peculiarity of the fresco technique. It is complex and the masters are dependent on craftsmen and assistants. Only as much plaster is applied to the wall as can be painted in one day – daily work. The fresh plaster is painted with pigments bound in the milk of lime. Wall paintings exposed to the weather suffer from acid rain and solar radiation. In the current wall painting, the fresco has been almost completely displaced by secco painting.
Secco is painting on dry plaster. The traditional way of painting is with tempera paints. Because of the better durability, nowadays mainly acrylic or silicate paints are used for painting. Pigments bound in lime water are used to restore frescoes. The development of acrylic paints made a significant contribution to banning the fresco from wall techniques. The films of the acrylic paint binders have almost ideal painting properties. They retain their lightfastness, adhere to almost any material, cannot be oxidized, do not yellow, and are resistant to aging and chemicals. Once dried, they are insoluble. The paint leaves the plaster’s vapor permeability. After completing the mural, the mural is varnished.
Frieze Dresden Slosch, detailSgraffito (from Italian sgraffiare: scratch) is a peculiar, proven technique of wall painting and facade design with an old tradition. Different colored plaster layers are applied on top of each other on the wall and scratched away while still damp at different depths so that the respective layers of color underneath become visible. Usually, the dark layers of color are below the light layers. Since the sgraffito technique only allows a detailed working method and smooth color transitions to a limited extent, it is more suitable for facade design and long-distance effects. Designs in grisaille are common. Sgraffitos are characterized by their longevity. The patrician houses in southern Germany, Austria, and Switzerland, decorated with sgraffitos, can still be admired today.
Even in antiquity, mosaics adorn the walls, ceilings, and floors of palaces, villas, and baths; world-famous the “Alexander Battle of Issus” from Pompeii, the Byzantine mosaics in the Hagia Sophia in Constantinople (Istanbul), San Vitale, Sant´ Apollinare Nuovo and other churches in Ravenna. The small plates – tesserae ( from Greek ) – made of stone, ceramic, terracotta, glass (especially valuable if covered with gold on the back) are resistant to moisture and atmospheric influences, making them ideal for swimming pools, walls, ceilings, and floors to decorate in bathrooms. Mosaics can be imitated well in illusion paintings, but painting the small stones is almost as laborious as embedding the tesserae. Effect colors, textured masses, and self-made materials enable a mosaic to be simulated astonishingly.
Wall painting with Oil paints
Ceiling painting in the residence in Augsburg/fragment interior ceiling and wall paintings, with the appropriate primer, oil paints are also possible. And there are also high-quality brushes you need to use, visit for more details. The danger of darkening is to be counteracted with lean, resinous, quick-drying solvents and a little beeswax, airy light tones, and a thin application of paint (for parts of the sky, glaze painting on a white background). Water-soluble oil paints are good choices. Owing to the slower drying process, oil paints can be used for a longer period of time. The enamel of the oil paints cannot be achieved with water-soluble paints.
Street art & graffiti
In the narrow sense of the word, graffiti is lettering sprayed with spray cans. With cans of spray guns or airbrush pictures on facades, walls, and road surfaces are referred to as street art. John Pugh, 3D Trompe-l’oeilStreet artists impress with amazing illusionistic effects in large-format 3D images and anamorphoses. Such pictures are often full of humor, often political and socially critical, sometimes bold, but can also come across as cheap.
- The speed that such spray technology enables.
- Even application over large areas, fine gradations possible.
- Photo-realistic effect with meticulous working methods in combination with brushes and stencils.
- Well suited for advertising purposes, painting of automobiles, etc., as well as body painting.
- Inaccurate, blurred contours for versions with a spray can.
- Impersonal touch, lack of an own artistic signature.
- Inharmonious color nuances.
- Insufficient experience with lightfastness and long-term durability of the colors.
In 1990 I immortalized myself with spray cans on three segments of the Berlin Wall not far from the Reichstag. Not long afterward, the work was “completed” by other sprayers. Ultimately, the good pieces are said to have been shipped to Japan.