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A plafond (French for "ceiling"), in a broad sense, is a (flat, vaulted or dome) ceiling.
A plafond can be a product of monumental painting or sculpture. Picturesque plafonds can be painted directly on plaster (as a fresco, oil, glutinous, synthetic paints), on a canvas attached to a ceiling (panel) or a mosaic.
As a decorative feature of churches and staterooms, plafonds were popular from the 17th century until the beginning of the 19th century. Designs of this period typically used the illusion of a break in the ceiling showing the architectural structure behind, strongly foreshortened figures, architectural details and/or the open sky.