Definition of gesso in English:


Syllabification: ges·so
Pronunciation: /ˈjesō

noun (plural gessoes)

A hard compound of plaster of Paris or whiting in glue, used in sculpture or as a base for gilding or painting on wood.
More example sentences
  • By the fifteenth century, many Western artists were using it in frescoes or in gesso on wood panel paintings.
  • Emulating the old masters, he used tempera and oil over gesso on wood, then covered the surface with transparent glaze.
  • Executed in egg tempera and gesso on panel rather than the acrylics and oils for which the artist is best known, these new paintings exhibit a sensual luminosity not previously seen in his work.


late 16th century: Italian, from Latin gypsum (see gypsum).



More example sentences
  • Other versions are realized in egg tempera on gessoed panels.
  • It transformed rich black walnut, oak, cherry and other hardwoods into plain, gessoed and gilded frames.
  • His highly crafted paintings consist of 30 to 50 smoothed and sanded coats of oil, graphite and pigment layered over gessoed wood.

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