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Art Terms in Action: Viscosity

To experiment on your own, take our online studio course Materials and Techniques of Postwar Abstract Painting Created by The Museum of Modern Art.

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Video transcript

Viscosity is the thickness of any fluid and in paint, high viscosity or viscos paint, comes straight out of the tube. In fact, it has the consistency of toothpaste as you can see. One way to decrease the viscosity of paint is to add linseed oil to it. Another way to decrease the viscosity of oil paint is to add solvent and in this case, turpentine. And another way to use low viscosity paint, is to simply paint with an enamel paint, which in the can is already prepared with a very low viscosity.