KCC Art 211 Ch 5 Critiquing ArtPresentation Transcript
Chapter 5 Evaluating Art Michelangelo The Creation of Adam (detail, Sistene Chapel, fresco painting)
Four major areas of art criticism Step 1 Description – the artwork in terms of its literal content and artistic elements. Step 2 Analysis – Describe how the work is organized as a complete composition. Step 3 Interpretation – interpret the work on the basis of what has already been discovered about the work in the first two steps. Consider not only the literal descriptions but also the emotional content and the use of symbols and allegories to arrive at the message or meaning in the work. Step 4 Judgment – about the work's worth based on the information gathered about the work. Judgments must be supported by what was learned through the "reading" process as they apply.
Step 1 - Description
DESCRIBE the artwork in terms of its literal content and artistic elements. Some things to consider are -
What is the name of the artist who created the artwork?
What kind of an artwork is it?
What is the name of the artwork?
When was this artwork created?
List the literal objects in the painting (trees, people, animals, mountains, rivers, etc.).
What is the written description on the label abut the work?
Describe the technical qualities of the work (i.e., tools, materials, instruments used).
Describe the subject matter. What is it all about? Are there recognizable images?
Consider the significant art elements that are present in this artwork and describe them - LINE, TEXTURE, SHAPE, COLOR, VALUE, SPACE, PATTERN
Botticelli - The Birth of Venus, 1845 tempera on canvas
Step 2 - Analysis
Describe how the work is organized as a complete composition. Some things to consider are -
The most significant art principles that were used in the artwork. The principles are – BALANCE, CONTRAST, EMPHASIS, HARMONY, VARIETY, UNITY, MOVEMENT, REPETITION/RHYTHM, PROPORTION, DEPTH, and COMPOSITION.
Describe how the artist used them to organize the elements. How is the work constructed or planned?
Identify some of the similarities throughout the work (i.e., repetition, etc ).
Identify some of the points of emphasis in the work (i.e., specific scene, figure, movement).
If the work has subjects or characters, what are the relationships between or among them?
Inness – Lonely Pine at Sunset 1893 oil on canvas
Step 3 - Interpretation
INTERPRET the work on the basis of what has already been discovered about the work in the first two steps. Consider not only the literal descriptions but also the emotional content and the use of symbols and allegories to arrive at the message or meaning in the work.
Based on what you have learned so far about the artwork, what do you think the artist was trying to say?
Why did the artist create this artwork?
What do you think it means?
What feelings do you have when looking at this artwork?
Do you think there are items in the artwork that represent other things or have other meaning or symbols?
Describe how the work makes you think or feel.
Describe the expressive qualities you find in the work.
What expressive language would you use to describe the qualities (i.e., tragic, ugly, funny)?
Does the work remind you of other things you have experienced (i.e., analogy or metaphor)?
How does the work relate to other ideas or events in the world and/or in your other studies?
Seurat – A Sunday Afternoon on an Island on La Grand Jatta 1884 oil
Step 4 - Judgment
JUDGMENT about the work's worth based on the information gathered about the work. Judgments must be supported by what was learned through the "reading" process as they apply.
Do you like this artwork?
Do you think it is a good artwork?
Do think it is an important artwork?
Would display this artwork in your home?
Is this artwork good enough to put in a museum? Present your opinion of the work's success or failure.
What qualities of the work make you feel it is a success or failure? Compare it with similar works that you think are good or bad.
What criteria can you list to help others judge this work?
How original is the work? Why do you feel this work is original or not original?
Justify your opinion. Explain why you feel the way you do about this artwork based on what you have learned about it.
Da Vinci – Mona Lisa 1503 oil When critiquing portraits, in general, the eyes will be the focus point because they are engaging the viewer by looking out of the picture at the viewer.