The classification provides four or more codes placed on four axis (A - formalism, B - matériality, C - involvement body/mind, D - communication). These codes are positionning the artist in the art history.
A axis : FORMALISM
When looking at the work, what type of formalisation first strikes the eye? Is it more abstract or more figurative, etc ? (on a scale from more "immaterial" to more "realist").
A470 : Forms of "Realism"
Differents ways of observing the realities of the world, from a point of view of: the solely Formal
between the "Neue sachlichkeit", "American scene" or "Nouvelle figuration", Reality as perceived by an artist whose subjectivity remains in abeyance (Christian Schad, Gérard Schlosser, Vincent Corpet, Gilles Aillaud, ...).
A340 : Representative works Work with active figures
shapes are more active but not really expressionist (Alberto Giacometti, Jean Hélion , ...).
A480 : Forms of "Realism"
Differents ways of observing the realities of the world, from a point of view of: "Hyperrealism"
Beyond Realism, fantastic representation of certain parts of Reality. In France (from J.O. Hucleux to Gilles Barbier, ...) but especially in the USA, in painting (Richard Estes, Richard Mac Lean) and in sculpture (John de Andrea, Duane Hanson, ..., and more recently; Ron Mueck, William Beckman, ...).
B axis : MATERIALITY
How does the materiality of what is shown come across?
(on a scale from more "immaterial" to more "real").
B180 : Materiality
in painting, but also with all other materials with the following possibilities: mixed materiality: structured / unstructured
when a work is "structured" in its "lack of structure", and vice versa (repetition of forms, signs, matter ... Viallat, Toroni, Degottex, Hantaï,...).
B230 : Materiality
in painting, but also with all other materials with the following possibilities: Structured structured combinations
any combinations of lines, colours, matter or volumes of a more structured type (Michail Heizer, Anish Kapoor, Miguel Barceló, ...).
C axis : INVOLVEMENT BODY/ MIND
With what body:mind ratio does the artist enter into his work?
Classify from the most "intellectual" (e.g."Concept Art"...) to the most "physical" (e.g. "Body Art", ...).
C130 : towards the intellectual side/ the essence of things inward looking work chiefly oriented towards: l'introspective
inner landscapes, emotions, feelings (Arpad Szenes, ...), serenity (Yves Klein's "Monochromes", ...), equilibrium ("mandalas" of Augustin Lesage or Adolf Wölfli, ...), memory (Boltenski "boxes", ...).
C160 : tending towards the corporeal / the senses via expression with "humanity" (the passage from Life to Death)
- in a literal manner (John de Andrea, Duane Hanson, Itsvan Sandorfi, ...)
- or a symbolic manner (James Ensor, G. Rouault, F. Gruber, Zoran Music, Rebeca Stevenson, Jan Vercruysse, ...), ...
C190 : tending towards the corporeal / the senses the work as the result of an action gestural
the work as the result of a bodily movement, chiefly a hand movement: from Jackson Pollock's "Dripping" to Georges Mathieu's "Lyrical Abstraction", L. Fontana's "perforations" to the flayed figures of V. Vélickovic.
D axis : COMMUNICATION
Does the artist have the deliberate intention to convey a message of any sort through his work?
(classified from the most "mystical" to the most "worldly").
D115 : via what is meant in various narrations or symbolisms whatever they may be
allegorical, metaphorical (J. Beuys' "materials", ...), analytical (Mario Merz's "Fibonacci series", or those of Robert Filliou, ...), critical (from Henri Cueco to Hans Haacke or Guillaume Bijl, ...).
D110 : via what is meant with various spiritual or less marked religious influences
(from Barnett Newman to Mark Rothko, from Roman Opalka to Arnulf Rainer, ...).
D130 : via what is meaningful
based on the idea that work on what symbolizes forms an intentional message in itself (for example: Daniel Dezeuze's "Stretchers", etc., etc., ...). by variations in execution
seriality, multiplication (Claude Viallat, Niele Toroni, "figurines" by Antony Gormley, ...), accumulation or compression (J. Chamberlain, Arman, César, ...), subtleties and variability of the material (Rober Ryman's "Whites"; dissolutions of "matter / life" by Roman Opalka or by On Kawara; Gilberto Zorio, ...).