tableau vivant

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tableau vi·vant

n. pl. tab·leaux vi·vants (tă-blō′ vē-väN′)
A scene presented on stage by actors who remain silent and motionless as if in a picture.

[French : tableau, picture + vivant, living.]

tableau vivant

(tablo vivɑ̃)
n, pl tableaux vivants (tablo vivɑ̃)
(Theatre) a representation of a scene, painting, sculpture, etc, by a person or group posed silent and motionless
[C19: literally: living picture]


(tæˈbloʊ, ˈtæb loʊ)

n., pl. tab•leaux (tæˈbloʊz, ˈtæb loʊz)
1. a picture, as of a scene.
2. a picturesque grouping of people or objects.
3. a representation of a picture, scene, etc., by one or more persons suitably costumed and posed.
[1690–1700; < French: board, picture]

tableau vivant

A French phrase meaning living picture, used to mean a silent and motionless group of people posed to portray a famous scene or event.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.tableau vivant - a group of people attractively arranged (as if in a painting)
arrangement - an orderly grouping (of things or persons) considered as a unit; the result of arranging; "a flower arrangement"
References in classic literature ?
The roar of guns, that had not ceased for ten hours, wearied the ear and gave a peculiar significance to the spectacle, as music does to tableaux vivants.
Historical pictures replaced by photographs of tableaux vivants formed and arranged by trained actors and artists, and used chiefly for the instruction of children.
In a similar tableaux vivant performance entitled Neue Arbeiten auf Papier (New Works on Paper), 2001, hobbypopMUSEUM turned their attention to the received wisdom that current art must embrace participatory aesthetics.
Roccasalva's installation, titled "Z", has evolved from paintings, installations and tableaux vivant that he has been creating since 2008.
Among the topics are Holcroft and the art of sinking in poetry, his translation of the 1780s and Isabelle de Montolieu's Caroline de Lichtfield, illustrating his A Tale of Mystery as physiognomical tableaux vivant, examining Jacobian sexual politics in Anna St.
At this time, the Kayan chieftaincy displayed, in a series of tableaux vivant, an imaginary narration of rice and divinely inspired authority as related to political power.
18) Eduard yon Kilanyi, Buda-Pesth, Austria-Hungary, Apparatus for Displaying Tableaux Vivant [sic], (GB189519841), filed Mar.
With a view to representing historical flash points, the teacher has the students pose in a series of tableaux vivants that reenact specific media images, or at least mimic the type of pictures that come to symbolize fraught moments.
The show is a series of tableaux vivants, "living pictures" that recreate famous (and not so famous) works of art using actual people as the human figures.
And one may grasp Hulten's interest in the resulting sense of disorientation and whimsy by considering his professed admiration for Raymond Roussel's 1914 novel Locus Solus, in which an inventor of bizarre machines--and, more specifically, of instruments that mechanize life--guides a group of visitors around his estate, showing them such startling objects as a large diamond (within which hover a hairless cat, a dancing girl, and the preserved head of Danton) and an enormous glass cage holding eight tableaux vivants.
While viewing Fast's dekineticized images, one may recall tableaux vivants from films by Jean-Luc Godard (Tout va bien [1972]), Jack Smith (Flaming Creatures [1963]), Derek Jarman (Caravaggio [1986]), or Gus Van Sant (My Own Private Idaho [1991]).