Art at Wheaton Area Schools, Wheaton Minnesota

Viewing & Responding to Art
Various ways of looking at Art

Select a picture from an art collection
or discuss and anyalyze the art work done by yourself or others in your class.

Questions to Stimulate Discussion and Analysis

First Reactions: Consider first impressions. What strikes you as interesting? Unusual? What attracts you to the work.

Meanings: What does this picture seem to be about? Does the work have a theme? Does the art work tell a story? Explain what you actually see in the work that makes you say this.

Visual Content: Naming things is the usual way people describe pictures. This may work on realistic kinds of art. But how do you describe the art that is abstract? An abstract or unrealistic picture is full of visual material though it is not subject to name identification. Try to use visual terms to describe the content.

Form and Space. Is the art designed for 2 dimensional or 3 dimensional space?

Hint: 2 dimension space has a flat and cut out look such as a silhouette.3 dimensional art has modeling, roundness, depth.

Looking at "performance" skills and methods

Consider the technique the artist used. What can you point to that seems to indicate a good application of skills. (Each art form has its own set of skills.) Can you see a place where "performance" is at a high level. Consider for example, musicians who play with skill or figure skaters who skate with skill.

Design Features:

Design introduces the idea of organization, variety, harmony, contrast, etc. Design is about relationships of parts to each other. Visual Elements in art use terms like "shape" or "color". But in design we get into such effects like "rhythms" cause be repeating shapes or "contrasts" caused by the colors black and red.

Describe a contrast feature>
Describe a rhythm feature>
Describe a variety feature>
Is unity achieved in the work? How?
Is repetition used by the artist to achieve harmony?
What about parts which don't go well together. Trying to make certain pieces fit in is the hardest thing in art making. Just about every art piece has something in it that doesn't 'jell'. Can you find one of these areas and suggest a remedy?


page update - 10 2005


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