Write a 1000 – 1500 word review. Here are the notes for Evaluating Art with Words.Choose one piece of art and deconstruct it. Discuss the composition of the piece, the colors used and the shapes created. Research the history of the piece and the artist (in some cases there will be information at the exhibition).
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Evaluating Art With Words
(from Prebles Artforms)
Using these three guidelines, you can interpret and analyze art. Keep this for your
notes as well as for your final paper.
1. Get the facts. Find out the name of the artist/creator of the work, the title of
the piece, the date it was made, the medium, the dimensions (size) of the
work and location of the work. Describe the work using as many facts as you
can find. If you are looking at a reproduction of the work, it is important to be
clear about the medium and size of the original work.
2. Analyze. Look at all the elements of the work and examine how they fit
together. How does the choice of medium affect the work? What formal
elements did the artist use? Assess the work in its context: Does it fit into a
movement or time period (e.g. Impressionist? Abstract Expressionist?
Contemporary?) Does it lead the way for a new movement or follow behind
another movement? (Van Gogh was part of the Impressionist movement, but
lead the way for the Fauvists movement) Consider its placement, both in the
artists career but also in the art historical time line. If the work was created a
long time ago, how was it received at the time it was created? How is it
3. Evaluate. Use the three types of art criticism discussed in class to assess the
quality or historical importance of the piece. Is it innovative? Does it move
you, emotionally? Does it show a particular moment in the artists life? Does
it speak to a greater social issue or cause? What kind of art is it? Think is it
for delight, commentary, persuasion? Does it challenge the viewer?
In terms of how you write, these steps are not equal. Steps 1 and 2 are the
most objective steps. Step 3 leads you to a debatable thesis or position on the
work. Step 1 is the easiest as you can find that information with a quick
search (or if you are in a museum, look at the wall label). Step 2 requires you
to dig a little deeper. Do more research. Step 3 is the hardest, but most
important step. It requires practice and careful seeing. 1
Frank, Patrick. Prebles Artforms, New York, Pearsons, 2014, Print
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