Museum Paper Spring 2011
The purpose of this essay is to compare two works of art in order to pinpoint their
differences more accurately and thereby gain a better understanding of each.
The essay involves looking at the work in the museum, writing a critical analysis
of each and then supporting your observations with research.
I suggest the following procedure. Make notes in the museum. Describe the
subject matter of each work. Then consider the aspects of form listed below. Try
to think how artists manipulate the conventions of illusionist painting or threedimensional
sculpture for a desired effect. If you adopts a compare-and-contrast
frame of mind as you consider each item, such as composition, use of color,
quality of brushwork and so on, you should arrive at key differences. Finally ask
yourselves how do the subject and the use of form create the personality of each
artwork? What is the searing statement that each work projects about its subject?
Back at the school you’ll need to do some research on the artists and the artworks.
You’ll need a sense of the general context and some specifics about the artist’s
goals, working methods and the significance of his or her subject matter as it
relates to the work you’re analyzing. Also consider that you may be inspired by an
interpretation of the work offered by an art historian or critic and including it in
your paper will make it richer and will deepen your insight. Or, there might be
some facts that really help explain the work to you, for example, like knowing that
Ingres used daguerreotypes as the basis for some of his portraits, which would
therefore be worth including in your paper.
Your paper should have a title—it is yours to choose! It should have an
introductory paragraph laying out the path you’re going to take. After your
analysis and highlights from your research, offer a summation in your concluding
paragraph. Usually when we observe work as students or professionals and
contemplate our response to it, then research it, often it will turn out that the
knowledge we gain will actually support our initial responses and thus enhance
our insight. The paper is about his journey. Be candid and transparent in naming
Format and length. Actually don’t think so much about length, but rather ask if
yourselves if you have adequately described, analyzed, and researched material to
explain and interpret the painting or sculptures to the reader. My guess is that your
printed paper will be between five and six pages.
For example if you pick Church’s Heart of the Andes, you have to compare and contrast it with Bierstadt’s The Rocky Mountains, Lander’s Peak. You can describe each of the artists and works based on objective fact but most importantly I also have to compare and describe artists and paintings in my view. In other words I have to put my own thinking, feeling and my own interpretation of those painting about color, composition, space, light,texture and so on. And write how artists manipulate the conventions of illusionist painting or three-dimensional sculpture for a desired effect. Professor emphasized that in order to describe and compare and contrast paintings, I need to have a close look to see detail of painting. In the 19th century, art was flourishing throughout Europe so there were many different art theories. Therefore you need to think different art theories each works such as: Neo-classicism, Romanticism, Realism, and Impressionism. Because Each work is in specific art movement and each movement has its own characteristics, and has its associated artists. My paper should have a title and topic to compare two paintings so please choose one. And you need to research and use at least two books which mainly deal with the artists and the artworks you choose in order to explain and interpret the paintings.
At least three quotes are required from two books.Bibliographies and footnotes are needed.
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