Meaning of decalcomania in English:


Pronunciation /dɪˌkalkə(ʊ)ˈmeɪnɪə/

See synonyms for decalcomania on


mass noun
  • 1The process of transferring designs from prepared paper on to glass or porcelain.

    1. 1.1A technique used by some surrealist artists which involves pressing paint between sheets of paper.
      ‘His range of effects is unusually eloquent; there is something of the monoprint to them, as well as elements of the Surrealist techniques of decalcomania and frottage.’
      • ‘In each, Krahenbuhl runs a dazzling gamut of painterly techniques: glazing, impasto, scumbling, decalcomania, fluid linear strokes and so on.’
      • ‘There are obvious associations to be made with Ernst's and Tanguy's wet-paint technique, decalcomania.’
      • ‘Ernst also later practised decalcomania, a process developed by Oscar Dominguez around 1936, which involved rubbing paint arbitrarily between two sheets of paper.’
      • ‘Other imaginative techniques of which he was a leading exponent were frottage (which he invented in 1925) and decalcomania.’


Mid 19th century from French décalcomanie, from décalquer ‘transfer a tracing’ + -manie ‘-mania’ (with reference to the enthusiasm for the process in the 1860s).