something of tawdry design, appearance, or content created to appeal to popular or undiscriminating taste.
1965, from kitsch + -y (2). Related: Kitchiness.
1926, from German kitsch, literally “gaudy, trash,” from dialectal kitschen “to smear.”
What we English people call ugliness in German art is simply the furious reaction against what Germans call süsses Kitsch, the art of the picture postcard, and of what corresponds to the royalty ballad. It has for years been their constant reproach against us that England is the great country of Kitsch. Many years ago a German who loved England only too well said to me, ‘I like your English word plain; it is a word for which we have no equivalent in German, because all German women are plain.’ He might well have balanced it by saying that English has no equivalent for the word Kitsch. [Edward J. Dent, “The Music of Arnold Schönberg,” “The Living Age,” July 9, 1921]
Works of art and other objects (such as furniture) that are meant to look costly but actually are in poor taste.
Note: Kitsch in literature and music is associated with sentimentalism as well as bad taste.
Being or resembling kitsch: Visconti’s kitschy film/ Its kitschy Lupe Velez ambiance (1960s+)
Literature or art having little esthetic merit but appealing powerfully to popular taste: It stands unchallenged as a masterpiece of kitsch/ The closest I can come to America is through its Kitsch
[1925+; fr German, ”trash, rubbish”]
[gee dzuh] /ˈgi ˈdzʌ/ noun 1. 12th-century b.c., legendary Chinese founder of Korea.
/ˈkɪtˌsɛt/ noun 1. (NZ)
[kit] /kɪt/ noun 1. a set or collection of tools, supplies, instructional matter, etc., for a specific purpose: a first-aid kit; a sales kit. 2. the case for containing these. 3. such a case and its contents. 4. a set of materials or parts from which something can be assembled: a model car made from […]
[kit-l] /ˈkɪt l/ noun, Yiddish. 1. a white robe used by Jews, especially Orthodox Jews, as a ceremonial garment for men and as a burial shroud for both sexes: worn during worship on Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur, by a bridegroom during the wedding ceremony, and by the leader of the Seder on Passover. /ˈkiːtɛl/ […]