| WHO? WHAT? WHY?
WHAT ART IS SAYING
Where and when was
the art work produced? What was the prevailing social political, economic
atmosphere or lifestyle of the time? (Do not be too
vague or too brief.) What were some recent contemporary events
occurring around that time? Times change peoples attitudes. Were there
prevailing technologies that might have affected the artistic interpretation
Form and Design Features
of the Work
art terms to describe the content. <visual
elements: shape, surface, size, mass,
color, tone, texture, line, movement, space, light/shadow; or
design elements e.g.: balance, contrast, rhythm, harmony, emphasis,
figure/field, repetition, tension, movement, etc.>
Form in Space Does
the art suggest 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, and depth.
Some pictures show great distance or depth others are “shallower”
and do not go back very far into the distance.
Design introduces the idea of composition
or organization. Design generally attempts to achieve variety,
harmony, contrast, etc. within the work. 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 the EFFECTS of the interplay between
elements, like "rhythm." Rhythm is an effect
caused by repeating shapes or lines; Another effect is "contrast"
caused by comparing two elements like the colors black and red.
Describe a contrast feature; Describe a rhythm feature; Describe
variety features; How is unity achieved in the work? Is repetition
used by the artist to achieve harmony? What forms or elements
are repeated. See “visual elements” named above.
TO INDEX TO ART LESSONS
Consider first impressions. What
strikes you as interesting? Unusual? What attracts you to the
work. What technology or methodology may have influenced the work
What does this picture seem to be
about? Does the work appear to have a theme? Does the art work
tell a story? Or express a feeling or mood? Explain what you actually
see in the work that makes you say this. What do you think the
intention of the artist was in selecting the forms, colors and
style that you see?
and Pictorial Content:
List the content of the picture,
name as many things as you can. Naming things is the usual way
we describe pictures. This may work on realistic kinds of art.
But how do you describe art that is not normal in appearance or
abstract? An abstract or unrealistic picture is still full of
visual material but it must be identified in a different way.
Use visual terms to describe the
content. <visual elements: shape, surface, size, mass, color,
tone, texture, line, movement, space, light/shadow; or design
elements e.g.: balance, contrast, rhythm, harmony, emphasis, figure/field,
repetition, tension, movement, etc.
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.