Canvas is the most conventional support for oil painting. The term Canvas painting refers to the concept of oil painting done on canvas. One of the earliest oil work done on canvas and which is still surviving is a French work Madonna with Angels. Till the 16th century the painting canvas used by most of the artists were called as panels. In the 17th century in northern Europe Mantegna and Venetian were the artists who brought change in the canvas painting process.
Traditional Painting Canvas:
Before doing canvas painting the canvas is often stretched across a wooden frame which is called as stretcher. This canvas is provided with an outer coating called as gesso. This coating is applied to prevent the oil painting done on canvas to come in direct contact of canvas fibers which can cause decay to the painting done on canvas. Before doing any kind of painting on canvas the canvas is first premièred. Various primer alternatives are available in market. Some flexible primers for canvas are also available among all these the synthetic latex is the most popular one. Early painting was done on canvas made of linen.
Avoiding the traditional art style, many modern artists such as Kenneth Noland, Francis Bacon, Jackson Pollock, Dan Christensen, Helen Frankenthaler, Larry Zox, Ronnie Landfield, painted on the uncoated painting canvas. Previously the painting canvas was use to be made of linen but with the early 20th century, cotton canvas was largely used.
Modern Painting Canvas:
In the modern era most of the painting canvas is available in small sizes but as these painting canvas are not acid free their lifespan is very limited hence they are used for current works. There is a very transparent difference between the old and modern painting style. In Modern painting style both the canvas texture and the paint is frequently used.