A postcubist movement in painting proposed by Amedée Ozenfant and Charles-Eduoard Jeanneret (aka. Le Corbusier) in their 1918 manifesto Après le Cubisme. Purism was characterized by the application of pseudoscientific ideas to the visual arts, and the use of geometric clarity and flat isometric projection. The movement was not adopted by other painters.

The subject matter of the Purist canvas was limited to 'objet-types', i.e., mass-produced objects of use, such as bottles, pipes, glasses, bentwood chairs, etc Mass-produced objects were allowed because they were seen to have stood the test of 'mechanical selection', an analogue to Darwin's natural selection.

Pur"ism (?), n. [Cf. F. purisme.]

Rigid purity; the quality of being affectedly pure or nice, especially in the choice of language; over-solicitude as to purity.

"His political purism."

De Quincey.

The English language, however, . . . had even already become too thoroughly and essentially a mixed tongue for his doctrine of purism to be admitted to the letter. Craik.


© Webster 1913.

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