"Art / Painting / Sculpture" Essays

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Sculptures of Gabriel Orozco the Object Term Paper

Term Paper  |  4 pages (1,173 words)
Style: MLA  |  Bibliography Sources: 1+


Sculptures of Gabriel Orozco

The object is the inverse of sculpture, which traditionally has its center of gravity in its base. What would happen, Orozco asks, if sculpture were opened up and we moved inside it? - Margaret Iversen, 2004

According to Werner (1997), technological multimedia work has been increasingly popularized in recent years throughout Mexico by installation artist Gabriel Orozco (1594). Taking images from what is commonly encountered by people during their daily lives, this artist reformulates these images into thought-provoking sculptures that have attracted a great deal of attention from critics and the public alike. In this regard, Mattick (2003) reports that, "Contemporary art nevertheless remains flavored by the sentiment of distance from the culture of business, a distance central to the identity of art in its modern sense. There are artists whose work directly addresses the commercial operation of galleries, museums, and art fairs like Gabriel Orozco" (117). This paper provides a brief biography of Orozco, followed by an overview of his work with a particular focus on his sculpture, "Oval with Pendulum." A review of the sculpture's work in is followed by a summary of the research and salient findings in the conclusion.

Review and Discussion

The biographical entry for the artist shows that Orozco was born in Jalapa, Veracruz, Mexico in 1962 and attended Escuela Nacional de Arte Plasticas in Mexico City, and at the Circulo de Bellas Artes in Madrid, Spain (Biography 1). According to one biographer, "For Orozco, objects are either the provocation or the residue of an event. Some of the sculptor's major works include the patterned human skull of "Black Kites," the curvilinear logic of "Oval Billiard Table," and the extended playing field of the chessboard in "Horses Running Endlessly" (Biography 1-2). Orozco has also experimented with other media as well, and although he is noted for the quality of his paintings, his sculptures appear to have been the predominant medium in which he has been celebrated. For instance, Orozco's sculptures were featured at Documenta XI in 2002,.".. where his sensuous terra-cotta works explored the elegance and logic of traditional ceramics -- a pointed commentary on Mexican craft and its place in a 'high art' gallery space" (Biography 2). Another famous exhibition in which Orozco has participated to date was the so-called "Sonic Process" which featured eight visual, sculptural installations as veritable sound studios that were designed especially for the exhibition held at the Pompidou Center, Paris in 2002, with subsequent showings in Berlin and Barcelona (Lovejoy 293). Today, the artist lives and works in New York, Paris, and Mexico City (Biography 3).

Orozco's "Oval with Pendulum."

According to Joselit (2000) "Gabriel Orozco makes such 'impossible objects,' in which the stain of reality remains pungent. For Orozco, objects are either the provocation or the residue of an event. Two aspects of rendezvous are evocatively juxtaposed in the second gallery of his LA exhibition" (173). One aspect of this collision of harsh reality and its impact on the viewer is a collection… [read more]

Ancient Egyptian Art Term Paper

Term Paper  |  16 pages (4,742 words)
Style: MLA  |  Bibliography Sources: 8


Visual Arts of Africa and the African Diaspora From Ancient Egyptian Art to Contemporary Times

Thutmosis III wearing the Atef crown.

From the Temple of Amun at Deir el-Bahri (mid-15th c. B.C.)

Toussaint l'Overture Series 1937 by Jacob Lawrence

From Rhapsodies in Black)

First, in response to the questions concerning the rules of creating a Works Cited list and its… [read more]

European Art History From 1400 to the Present Term Paper

Term Paper  |  2 pages (526 words)
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European Art History From 1400 to the Present

One of the most important aspects that Reformation brought about was the rejection of icons and religious images into its practice. This meant that Reformed art tended to have no paintings or sculptures of saints, no images of Christ and none of the imagery that had dominated Christian art to that point, especially in Italy during the period from the 13th to the 16th century (Early Renaissance artists, such as Cimabue or Giotti, painted almost solely representations of Christ or images from the lives of saints, notably from the life of St. Francis, as painted by Giotto).

The fact that the new religion no longer acknowledged the presence of Christ in imagery meant that the artists and painters needed to turn to a different subject of inspiration. This was generally everyday life. There are usually two such situations. The first one revolved around commissions for individual or family portraits. Such examples provided a potentially large demand for painters, given the rising economic importance of middle class families. The other was the simple village scenery, best portrayed in some of Pieter Bruegel's paintings. One such painting is the Peasant Wedding Feast.

The remarkable thing about this painting is that it manages to surprise in a relatively small space and without a remarkable action going on (the participants are all dining), a vast array of characters, individual figures and perceptions, gestures and isolated actions etc. Bruegel manages to inspire himself from everyday life and create icon figures that have nothing to do with the saintly vision and…… [read more]

Art of Math Term Paper

Term Paper  |  7 pages (2,486 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1+


Mathematics and Art

Mathematics is often treated as a distant and very different discipline from the arts, but in fact the arts make use of mathematics in a number of ways. The relationship between mathematics and music should be evident, while the relationship between mathematics and the graphic arts may be less apparent. Paintings, drawings, and designs can be analyzed… [read more]

Title Insurance and Art Term Paper

Term Paper  |  7 pages (2,092 words)
Style: Chicago  |  Bibliography Sources: 10


Art Title

It is interesting to note that attaining a career in Title Insurance can be as easy as taking a few online courses, and that some states do not even require that minimal amount of education in order to get a license to work in Title Insurance.

One school offering online courses in Title Insurance states, "While some states… [read more]

Statues of Art Term Paper

Term Paper  |  1 pages (372 words)
Bibliography Sources: 0


Statues of Art - Auguste Rodin

In the case of Auguste Rodin, the most striking element is, in my opinion, the exactness with which he modeled the two bodies giving the impression of reality. The two bodies seem alive and about to move. The impression of reality and authenticity is also given by the shadows of the statues, but mostly by details such as the contraction in the man's foot and the way his lover's back is arched which generate the impression that they are actually made of flesh, bones and muscles. I believe that behind the actual technique he employed was his desire to illustrate passionate love through lines and curves. The sculpture is in many ways, very sexual depicting two lovers engaging in a kiss fueled by sexual tension. A good example is the position of the man's hand on his lover's thigh as well as the way the woman barely touches the ground with her feet. I think the sculpture breathes eroticism especially through the body language of the two lovers; it is very interesting to notice that their lips do not even…… [read more]

Western and African Art Term Paper

Term Paper  |  1 pages (414 words)
Style: MLA  |  Bibliography Sources: 1


Western and African Art


Which missionary poses the greatest danger to traditional African culture and beliefs, Mr. Brown or Reverend Smith? While Smith is the more personally unpleasant of the two Christians, and Mr. Brown seems to act out of his sincere convictions, however misguided, that he is doing the right thing in attempting to covert the native populace, Brown is the more dangerous of the two. Brown is able to sugar-coat his message with displays of tolerance, rhetorically equating the tribal god with what he regards as the one true God even though he does not really believe this to be the case. Brown does not actually believe that it is possible for people to worship his Christian God through Chuku. Achebe supports pluralism and cultural cross-pollination between African tribes, as exemplified in the positive but contrary influences Okonkwo is exposed to, during enforced stay with his wife's family and the positive incorporation of new children from other tribes that makes Okonkwo's son temporarily feel as if he as a future as a leader. However, the pluralism of Brown is a false pluralism, and has ulterior motives of eradicating the culture of another people. The failure of Okonkwo to change to help his people and…… [read more]

18th Century Art Term Paper

Term Paper  |  1 pages (325 words)
Style: MLA  |  Bibliography Sources: 1


18th Century Art

So, why, given your sound position on the times and viewer responses like mine, would some call these works propaganda?

Can a work of great art, specifically great Romantic art, still be a work of propaganda? The answer must be 'yes.' The art of David is unapologetically pro-Napoleon, and David's Napoleon is a figure who represents the hope of France because of the beauty, majesty, and centrality of the leader with the frame David's paintings. However, the active nature of the lines and shadings of David's painting makes Napoleon come alive in a way that stands as testimony to the painter's talent. Even someone with no feelings about the leader who inspired David feels stirred, gazing at the painting. The painting transcends time and the man and the events that inspired David's portraits. The viewer thinks about the types of hero-worship that are common to our time, not just David's age.

Likewise, Goya's "Third of May" was inspired by…… [read more]

Romanticism 18 Century Term Paper

Term Paper  |  2 pages (660 words)
Style: MLA  |  Bibliography Sources: 3


Romantic Art and 18th Century Revolution

The career of the French artist Jacques-Louis David bridges what is commonly thought of as the dividing line between Romantic and Neoclassical art. In works like "The Oath of the Horatii" and "The Death of Marat," elements of both periods are manifest. On one hand, particularly in "The Oath of the Horatii," the subject may seem Classical in its setting. David's works "The Death of Bara," "Lepeletier," or "Napoleon Crossing the Alps" portray their subjects in a heroic mold, similar to Classical sculpture in these painting's worship of the body, militarism, or athleticism. But the emotion and energy of David's works in the line of the human figures, and the story-like quality of the works takes them out of the pure Neoclassical mode.

Even in "The Oath of the Horatii," which was painted before the French Revolution, the young men do not simply take an oath and strike the viewer as excellent physical specimens, as they might in dispassionate Neoclassical reproductions. Instead, their faces, and the faces of the man holding the swords are agitated, and women in the background turn away in grief. "Marat" is not simply a portrait of a beautiful dead body. The subject's humble, naked position in the bath reminds the viewer of the French Revolution and the circumstances that spawned his death. In all of these words, partly as a reflection on the French Revolution and particularly the "Rights of Man," the individual is at the focus of David's art, not simply creating Neoclassical balance and proportional positioning of in the artist's composition. The individual may be beautiful and heroic, but still the historical story of the individual Horatii, Marat, or Napoleon has come to the forefront of the design and subject in a new and unique fashion.

Similarly, Antoine-Jean Gros' studies of Napoleon such as "Napoleon on the Battlefield of Eylau" and "Napoleon Bonaparte on Arcole Bridge" are of the moment, a part of Napoleon's life, and do…… [read more]

Baroque Art and Architecture Peter's Cathedral Term Paper

Term Paper  |  2 pages (705 words)
Style: MLA  |  Bibliography Sources: 2


Baroque Art and Architecture

PETER'S CATHEDRAL in Rome and the PALACE of VERSAILLES convey very different stylistic messages to the viewer. St. Peter's is stately, conservative, and elegantly simple, while the Palace of Versailles seems grander and a little gaudier somehow.

The Palace is much larger than St. Peters, so the architecture must be created on a grander scale. It was also meant as a royal home, so it must convey the majesty and pomp of the French court, while St. Peters must convey the majesty and pomp of the Catholic Church. In that, their missions are similar and so are some of their architecture, such as the "boxy," square appearance of both buildings, and the columns and carvings that decorate both.

They show similar aspects of a culture that grew during the Renaissance and included grand, highly decorative buildings, used as much as monuments to beauty as much as for other useful purposes. Both of these buildings show attention to detail and building techniques that do not exist today, such as the fine stonework of the walls, and the artistic decorations around the tops of the buildings.

It is interesting to see how different architects added to or changed the buildings, and how the interpreted the uses of the buildings. Much of the Palace's grandeur is enhanced by the grand gardens surrounding the Palace, which add to the overall feeling of space and grandeur when viewing the house. St. Peter's seems almost starkly bare, but the building's elegance is in the height of the facade and the beautiful dome capping the effect of the building. All the architects involved used symbolism to convey the building's use and the culture at the time. St. Peter's is clearly a church, it could not be anything else, while the Palace is clearly a building used in state affairs.

Both of these buildings send different messages to the viewer, and they both are architecturally beautiful representations of two different uses for public buildings. They are elegant, breathtaking, and stately, each in their own way.

The three sculptures of DAVID by Michelangelo, Bernini, and Donatello all…… [read more]

Journalism Art in the Form of Wires Term Paper

Term Paper  |  1 pages (362 words)
Style: APA  |  Bibliography Sources: 2


¶ … Journalism

Art in the form of wires and words "

Ruth Asawa is best known for her crocheted wire sculptures, while Fiona Banner puts a new twist into the concept of nude art. Asawa's wire sculptures are three dimensional in nature while Banner's artwork is two dimensional. Asawa only used crocheted wire as material for her work; Banner employed large graphite canvases and block letters as material for hers. In creating her work Asawa used a method that "yielded fluid forms with structure and surface mutually defining one another via a repetitive, loopy line with just enough strength to hold a shape when suspended"(Miles, Dec. 31, 2006). Asawa's artwork also cut the air into silhouettes and allowed space to flow through it. For her artwork Banner simply had graphic verbal descriptions of nudes running as continuous lines throughout the canvases.

Only the wires' natural grayish colors were used for Asawa's artwork. Banner, however, prominently used colors to give meaning to her work. In her piece entitled "Smokey Nude" for example, Banner used white block letters cast upon a misty…… [read more]

Feminist Baroque and Rococo Term Paper

Term Paper  |  9 pages (2,730 words)
Style: MLA  |  Bibliography Sources: 5


Feminist Perspective in Baroque and Rococo Art and Architecture

As we explore the notion of feminism in the early 17th century baroque and late 17th century rococo art and architecture, there very quickly and noticeably the absence of a feminist perspective. In the early part of the century, during the period most commonly associated with the masters of baroque, there… [read more]

How Is Art and Culture on the Internet Impact on Wider Social Issues? Term Paper

Term Paper  |  6 pages (2,084 words)
Style: MLA  |  Bibliography Sources: 6


¶ … Internet and Fine Art

What is the difference between art and culture, especially when it appears on the Internet? Answer: Nothing. Art becomes part of the culture; the more it is seen and accepted. The culture is also reflected in Art. Visual images that are appearing on the web reflect the great diversity of styles, artists and showcases… [read more]

Walter Benjamin: The Art of Work Term Paper

Term Paper  |  3 pages (935 words)
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Walter Benjamin: The Art of Work in Age of Mechanical Reproduction

Walter Benjamin in his article 'The Art of Work in Age of Mechanical Reproduction' has justified the usage of mechanical equipments for the means of production of art works. Plagiarism and copyrights have been traditional issues, the duplication of any master piece has been considered as a serious offence and in certain part of the world serious capital punishments are awarded for defying copyrights.

This particular essay is with reference to duplication of art pieces. Through out centuries art has been driving force towards the spiritual, social and economic accomplishment of an individual and society. Art has played vital role in nurturing and molding of society's frame of thoughts and application. The promotion and propagation of Art pieces through duplication has been critical issue, some agree to it and others disagree with this notion of publicizing independently.


Walter in his text, 'The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction', studies the influence of mechanical technologies on the history of art and human consciousness. He discusses the new production techniques which engender the new means of judging the original work piece. He further elaborates that the technological advancement has achieved new standards, and duplicated pieces are considered as original and real pieces. He concludes with the fact that human perception, particularly optical perception, is in an ongoing state of evolution.

Walter's article is canonical in art history, film studies and related fields. Benjamin further elaborates that previously, painting or sculptures were embedded with aura, which gave a sense of absolute uniqueness towards the artwork. In the age of technology, Benjamin perceives that the uniqueness of art piece has diluted by the application of reproduction devices, he welcomes the idea of art without aura, i.e. promotion of duplicated copies. In present scenario characteristic art forms, photography and film lack the element of originality.

Benjamin supports the usage of mechanical devices, reasoning that aura was a kind of aristocratic mystery, and the art develops it values on the basis pf present rather than past. The implementation of technological production means are more kind of democratic art. He writes,

The social significance of film, even -- and especially -- in its most positive form, is inconceivable without its destructive, cathartic side: the liquidation of the value of tradition in the cultural heritage.'(Benjamin Walter)

The art community believes that it is Benjamin's likely embracement of Communism which influenced his thoughts, and developed a soft and lenient stand towards the publication and duplication of art pieces. Benjamin's personal circumstances only reinforced this judgment.

Benjamin suggested that technologies of mechanical reproduction and systems of mass production changed modes of human perception and evaluation, fundamentally altering our aesthetic responses.

Benjamin argues that experience of cultural imagery has been under dramatic influence…… [read more]

Artistic Styles Essay

Essay  |  2 pages (643 words)
Bibliography Sources: 2



These art works were created during the Renaissance. How do they illustrate Renaissance values and ideals?

The most common values / ideals that these different canvases are illustrating include: balance / proportion and the chiaraiso. The use of balance and proportion is utilized in both works through: showing life like images of subjects. In the case of Michael Angelo's Pieta, he is taking this one step further by illustrating real life images that were taking place. Once this occurred, it meant that everyone could relate and understand these ideas. Where, this is giving a sense of realism in the various works of art. (Richardson)

Chaiaraiso is when different colors and lighting are used to set the tone of the art work. In Isenheim Altarpiece, this being utilized with: dark colors in the background to show the sense of confusion and despair. However, when you look at the various subjects in the paintings, they are in brighter colors (i.e. gold and red). This is designed to highlight how a sense of momentous change is occurring with this incident. As a result, the use of chaiariso is a common technique that many painters will embrace to create a sense of mysticism and reality. In this work, Gruenwald used this as way to create an appreciation for these events and their meanings. (Richardson)

These different elements are important, because they are showing how: the values and ideals have been constantly changing during the Renaissance. As, artists were embracing more liberal techniques to: tell a story, provide a sense of realism and mysticism. Over the course of time, these different factors would help to make these works of art masterpieces (based upon the way the artists were able to use these values and ideals).


"Isenheim Altarpiece." Learner.org, 2011. Web. 10 Jun. 2011

Holroyd, Charles. Michael Angelo. London: Ballayntyne, 2004. Print.

Richardson, Carol. Renaissance Art. Malden: Blackwell, 2007. Print.… [read more]

Mark Ryden and Lowbrow Art Movement Essay

Essay  |  4 pages (1,284 words)
Bibliography Sources: 4



Mark Ryden is a Pasadena, California-based artist who, according to the biographical material on his Website, "first garnered attention in the 1990s when he ushered in a new genre of painting, 'Pop Surrealism.'" Likewise, critics have called Ryden "a pop star of painting," ("Mark Ryden at the Frye Art Museum" 24). Ryden has achieved fame and notoriety, as his paintings have been sold to celebrities and garner a pretty penny. However, to use the word "pop" too much in the context of Mark Ryden is to neglect another dimension of the artist's work. Ryden might have achieved fame within the popular culture. Yet being popular no longer entails being "lowbrow." As Ryden's biography states, it is possible to blend popular culture icons, elements, and ideas with "techniques reminiscent of the old masters," in order to create "a singular style that blurs the traditional boundaries between high and low art," ("Mark Ryden"). Comparing Ryden to the old masters might seem presumptuous. However, a close examination of the artist's work reveals that when placed in its historical and cultural context, Mark Ryden indeed occupies the intersection between highbrow and lowbrow art.

Lowbrow art is a term used by critics like Gilbert Shelton, founder of Juxtapoz, and editor of books like The Lowbrow Art of Robert Williams. Elevating what might once have been called lowbrow art to the position of highbrow does not require the work of art critics. Rather, the transformation of lowbrow into highbrow requires new viewers and changes in society itself. Related to the Mark Ryden exhibition at the Frye Art Museum, one critic notes that when Susan Sontag first wrote about "camp" in art, it was in the 1960s. Art like Ryden's transcends Sontag's definition of camp in many ways. For one, there is some "seriousness and dignity in what it achieves," to use Sontag's words (cited in "Mark Ryden at the Frye Art Museum"). Moreover, Ryden's art includes disturbing, macabre, and evocative imagery that begs the viewer to penetrate deeper. Camp rarely achieves such a lofty goal. As Shelton puts it, "there are no sociological prerequisites for being a lowbrow," (34).

Ryden's art contains "subject matter loaded with cultural connotation," ("Mark Ryden"). As such, the art seems to be lowbrow because it refers frequently to popular culture and its icons. Yet Ryden's "infinitely detailed and meticulously glazed surfaces" elevate the popular culture elements to the realm of high art ("Mark Ryden"). Much high art contains elements from popular culture; the subject matter itself does not define whether an art is considered highbrow or lowbrow.

One reason why Ryden has achieved recognition in art circles is because the symbols the artist uses "only pose questions," ("Mark Ryden at the Frye Art Museum" 24). For instance, a common theme in Ryden's work is children. Children are depicted in unnatural states, though. They are cartoon-like in their rendition but they appear sad, old, or emotionally disturbed. The viewer is not looking at something that would be considered camp or "pop,"… [read more]

Art Historical Throughout the History Research Paper

Research Paper  |  2 pages (626 words)
Style: Chicago  |  Bibliography Sources: 3


Art Historical

Throughout the history of art, there are those individuals who had an impact on the how everyone looked at the world around them. This is because these basic ideas gave them a new way of understanding a host of different events. One of the best artists that were able to achieve the objectives was Michael Angelo through: the paintings and sculptures that he created. This is significant, because this allowed him to be able to redefine Renaissance art and how these techniques would be applied in the future. To determine the impact of this require looking at three different scholarly journals on the subject. Once this occurs, is when we can be able to offer specific insights that will help everyone to see how this transformed modern art.

In the article that was written by Lavoy (1999), it is discussing how Michael Angelo's techniques are continually mirrored in many public works projects around the world. To determine this, the author scanned and compared several of the different sculptures with others that were constructed after his death. What he found, was that in nearly all public statutes he examined there were different elements of Michael Angelo's David that were incorporated into the project itself. As this was designed to give everyone a sense of realism about what was happening. This is important, because it is showing how Michael Angelo was able to influence the size and design of sculptures by making them appear to be realistic as well as overpowering. Once this occurs, is when the work will give everyone a sense of appreciation for the significance of the events and the person surrounding them.

Moreover, the article that was written by Eknoyan (2000), is talking about how Michael Angelo used to draw pictures of the internal organs of the body when he was younger. This helped to give him a sense…… [read more]

Art History Essay

Essay  |  4 pages (1,299 words)
Bibliography Sources: 0


Art History

Certainly, after proceeding into the course, I see the world with a radically different perspective than when you began your art studies. I now look much more deeply into things around you myself and with a different set of eyes and mind. I now do not see art as something that has a definitive form or an exact composition. Rather, the art can be relative have elements that do not have to directly reflect reality on the surface. Indeed, via principles of art as well as the significance of the things that one is looking it in terms of symbols or themes. Mystically, art opens up the vistas of the human mind and the subconscious that we would otherwise ignore. It helps us to not just "smell the roses" so to speak, but to take a mind trip, so to speak, and to see them in new colors and perspectives that we would not otherwise have been able to have.

This really hits upon what art is. Whether it is 20,00 French cave art or the most modern art that one can find in a museum, art and abstraction really is a uniquely human activity. It is a reflection of the human soul put on canvas. We dwell on what endures and lives beyond. Reality is not just what we see, but a mystical something that we can not readily lay our hands on. Art gives us the mystical tools to grasp this underlying reality and bring it back to the surface to appreciate in properly whether we are in the cathedral or in the exhibit hall. After all, for most of us, the art museums are our temples and we must adorn them with the sacred to help us find meaning in the crazy world.


I like the synthetic cubist painting by Picasso on page 300 better due to the clown like character of the landscape that the artist created. Cubism appeals to me because of its abstraction of reality, breaking it down and then analyzing its component parts. Analytic Cubism much simpler being a less sophisticated analysis of the objects/subjects by pulling them apart for analysis into planes. The Synthetic Cubism in this painting of the three musicians is more of a pushing together of the several objects together for analysis. It is less pure though because is looks like it has fewer shifts of focus and also less shading. This looks so much to me like the artist was trying to create a perception of flatter space.

With this otherworldly appearance and appeal, Picasso's paintings are very surreal, mystical and magical at the same time. If Picasso had lived around Berkeley n the 1960's, I would think he would have been taking acid and running around with Timothy Leary dropping psychedelics and listening to rock music to expand his mind. The whole painting is a transpersonal trip into an altered world of perception that only Picasso knew and understood and that he refused… [read more]

Art Term Paper

Term Paper  |  1 pages (349 words)
Bibliography Sources: 0


A painting can be called art where it too has a purpose but not all paintings would be called art.

A child drawing can create a painting but it would not be called art if it was not created for a purpose. A student could create a painting out of splashes of paint but this would not be true art unless it had greater meaning.

The difficulty is that it is not just the finished product that matters but the artist also.

Some paintings that are called art look no greater than something a child could produce. The difference is that the artist created them that way for a specific purpose.

Paintings are created with a meaning in mind, the artist creates something that people respond to. A painting that can truly be called art will be one that will mean something to people viewing it. It will express an idea, an emotion or a scene.

A painting that is art then is one that has purpose, whatever that purpose may be.… [read more]

Modern Philosophies of Art Term Paper

Term Paper  |  2 pages (777 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1+


Modernism in Art

Modern Philosophies of Modern Art: a 'Readymade' debate or a mutual society of agreement? Greenburg v. Duchamp

Marcel Duchamp makes two sweeping assumptions regarding the production of art -- first, that art is 'readymade' in other words, that all art really only has a surface uniqueness, and that art is dependant upon derivative materials of production. This is nothing to be ashamed of, rather it is endemic to all art, and is the source of the strength of art in all media.

However, according to Clement Greenburg, the essence of modern art specifically lies in the ability of art to engage in a kind of 'self critique' through the actual process of making art. He uses, at the beginning of the section of his essay on modern art, the analogy of how Kant used logic to establish the limits of logic. He suggests that modernism used the same limitations, now ascribed to art, such as the flatness of composition, in a positive fashion. For instance, Greenburg paints, no pun intended, Manet as kind of a neo-Andy Warhol, as Manet "became the first Modernist" as he created "pictures by virtue of the frankness with which they declared the flat surfaces on which they were painted." (Greenburg, 195)

Greenberg's statement of modern art as a self-critique is echoed in some of the words of modern artists themselves. As noted by Marcel Duchamp's essay on his own composition, "I realized very soon the danger of repeating indiscriminately this form of expression and decided to limit the production of 'Readymades' to a small number yearly." "Readymades" is a work of modern art that involves replication of mechanistic methods of production. However, although "Readymades" is an act of self-parody in the sense that it takes the limits of readymade production to an absurd extreme, and deploys such elements in a consistent and uniform fashion, it is also, according to the artist, parodies art.

But the work does not specifically parody modern art, but art in general, for according to Duchamp, "the spectator even more for the artist, art is a habit forming drug." Art in the Western individualistic tradition is supposed to be unique, but what is key to the artistic understanding of "Readymades" are their lack of uniqueness and sense of standardized capitalistic form that is supposed to be…… [read more]

Japanese Art of Balance Term Paper

Term Paper  |  10 pages (3,502 words)
Bibliography Sources: 10


One of the areas of balance that is cultivated when creating origami is patience. If the folds are not just right and in the correct order, or if one gets in a hurry and is sloppy, the origami will not come out correctly. Sometimes it will not look quite right. Other times, it becomes impossible to create it at all… [read more]

Printmaking: A Pre and Post Term Paper

Term Paper  |  1 pages (472 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1


The standardization of images in lithography, one can see in other arts. One can see such standardization present in the sameness of supposedly original photographs on magazine covers, all of which, although of different women, often depict models and actresses in the same pose. Furthermore, art such as the work of Andy Warhol, shows that replication, when taken to the level of self-parody of the multiple image of advertising, can attain the level of high art.

"Topical broadsides" or clip art often are reflective the mores of a preceding era. Even unlike trademarked brands, they are generalized and no longer even exist as trademarks. (55) Yet this again an illustration of how standardized images become part of cultural dialogue and discourse just as much as language -- the checkered red of a diner tablecloth signifies eating as much as the word 'to eat' itself, when certain images enter the gallery of lithography and become common to a printed culture of the advertising image. But even today, the beauty of creative and individual art such as the "Mona Lisa" comes to stand for something, an idea like 'the Renaissance' or 'high art,' rather than becomes an interesting object of pluralistic significance in and of itself, when it is reproduced sufficiently and becomes an object of mass consumption.

Work Cited

Weisberg, Ruth. "The Syntax of the Print."… [read more]

Painting Analysis Jean-Francois Millet: 'Priory at Vauville Term Paper

Term Paper  |  5 pages (1,931 words)
Bibliography Sources: 0


Painting Analysis

Jean-Francois Millet: 'Priory at Vauville, Normandy'

The French painter Jean-Francois Millet (1814-75) was a noted example of the realist school of painting. He began as a portrait painter, but made his reputation with paintings of scenes of peasant life in the French countryside, such as 'The Sower' (1850), 'Harvesters Resting' (1853) and 'The Gleaners' (1857). These works were… [read more]

19th Century Art Term Paper

Term Paper  |  5 pages (2,011 words)
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In Europe, the nineteenth century was an age of radical change during which the modern world took shape. In a world that was experiencing a population explosion of unparalleled magnitude, revolution followed revolution, a pattern punctuated by counter-revolution and conservative reaction. In thought as well as in science, the… [read more]

UCLA Art Term Paper

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I became interested in the way forms created an environment and worlds of mood and feeling; as can be seen in many of Henry Moore's sculptures. My personal view of is that all art forms create spaces or environments which we can explore and which not only excite the imagination but also lead to an understanding of reality.

This interest in sculpture and especially in the more practical and technical side of sculptural art became combined with my views and interests in the environment and eventually melded into a desire to study architecture. I became interested in the Bauhaus school of architecture which further motivated me towards a study of this discipline. However, I am firmly convinced that architecture is reliant on and intimately linked to other forms of art and theory. I therefore feel that an overall and in-depth understanding of the various art forms is essential.

I would like to study at UCLA as the University offers the expertise and facilities to provide the sort of background in both theory and practice that I require. I feel the Art Department's world renowned status as well as the high caliber of the teaching would be essential for the direction that I have chosen. I firmly believe that the imaginative and creative style of UCLA would be the ideal place for my studies in both the theoretical and practical aspects which I believe are necessary foundation for the study of architecture.


Chipp, H (1968) Theories of Modern Art. London.…… [read more]

Art History -- High Renaissance Term Paper

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Another massive sculpture by Michelangelo is his Moses (1513-1515), originally meant for the tomb of pope Julius II. In order to appreciate this fantastic piece of marble, one must study it in detail -- the sense of relevance in each detail of body and drapery forces the viewer to raise his emotional levels. The muscles bulge, the vein swell, the great legs seem to begin to move ever so slowly. In addition, the turned head concentrates the expression of terrible wrath that appears to stir in the eyes. With David, all of the ideals of the Renaissance are fully at work, for it demonstrates the power and magnificence of not only the church but also of man himself.

In conclusion, Raphael, Leonardo Da Vinci and Michelangelo symbolize the loftiest goals of the High Renaissance by making their figures come alive as if made out of flesh and blood. In a sense, these artists created a new artistic profession that exhibited its own rights of expression, its own character and its own claims to greatness within western civilization.



Hartt, Frederick. History of Italian Renaissance Art. New York: Prentice-Hall & Harry N. Abrams, 1974.

Klein, Robert and Henri Zerner. Italian Art, 1500-1600: Sources and Documents. New Jersey:…… [read more]

Art What Is Considered Beautiful Term Paper

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Art - What is Considered Beautiful?

People's evaluation of art can never be anything other than subjective. When someone praises a work, or even simply declares that they find it beautiful, their criteria are rarely based on the intrinsic merit of the work, but rather on how it makes them feel-or because they know that the artist is famous." It can be said that this statement is generally true.

Art is both perceptual and psychological, thus the "power of aesthetic perception is the interaction between the object and the beholder" (Chang Pp).

Art creates emotion and so creates response. "The experimental aesthetic value of even the most successful art pieces is relative with changes in time and conditions of the society in which it resides" (Chang Pp). Because art is psychological, it involves both the conscious and unconscious processes of the beholder (Chang pp). This awareness and receptivity of a piece of art is referred to as the sensitivity of the beholder (Chang Pp). Art represents the past realities, as well as functioning as a predictor of societal evolution (Chang Pp).

Nathan Kogan writes that Paleolithic art forms, paintings and sculptures, were associated with ritual and ceremonies, thus, promoting the solidarity and prosperity of the group as a whole (Kogan Pp). Art is emotional and this arousal "implies distinctive central and autonomic nervous system activity, which represents the primary connection between art and biology" (Kogan Pp). Therefore, humans have an underlying sensitivity to the arts, and from the days the Paleolithic era, art appears to be embedded within the human genes (Kogan Pp).

The definition of art to most people today differs greatly from that of past societies (Art Pp). Today, critics include in their definition of art what is called 'visual culture,' such as comic books, advertising, television, and motion pictures (Art Pp). "Perhaps the major difficulty in defining art lies in the fact that art implies value-monetary, social, and intellectual. Large amounts of money may be involved when an object is regarded as art" (Art Pp). For example, "a sculpture of beer cans by American artist Jasper Johns is worth millions of dollars, while beer cans themselves are worth almost nothing" (Art Pp). Most critics believe that John's work qualifies as art "because the artist intended it to be seen as art' (Art Pp). However, there is much in the world that is considered art, yet the "artists" had no such intention when they created it, such as "blankets woven by Navajo women whose identities are unknown" (Art Pp). Art is ever changing, "not only in its general definition but also in its…… [read more]

Art Is Changed Term Paper

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One can view the picture that he paints and feel the lonliness that he required for him to do his best work. As a young painter he was considered undisplined which also shows in this particular painting. Viewing the color use and the use of lines denoting the background and horizon one can feel the desire to reach out and touch mankind, while at the same time being content to have many miles between the viewer and the hustle and bustle of society.

In Pierre Bonnard's Terrace painting the exact opposite is realized. This painting reflects society's desire to be alive and social (Grainstack 1891 http://www.oceansbridge.com/art/customer/product.php?productid=38385& cat=4037& page=19& maincat=M). The painting not only reflects such an image through the use of the images that are in the painting but also in the fact that the colors are bright and cheerful. One only has to gaze at this painting and discover the gaiety of the time which reflects the political and cultural attitude that the painter lived in (Grainstack 1891 http://www.oceansbridge.com/art/customer/product.php?productid=38385& cat=4037& page=19& maincat=M).

Food is plentiful as is denoted on the canvas and the people seem to be happy to be gathering. There are no expressions of worry on the faces of those in the painting. While The Haystack produces a feeling of lonely hard life, The Terrace produces the exact opposite emotion and illustrates the general attitude of society in that era.

In Paul Signac's The Windmills the artist blends a combination of the two when he provides a colorful and cheerful work of windmills. The colors used are significant factors because of the cheerful and happy emotion they bring forth. The picture has very little to do with socializing yet it welcomes the idea of social happiness by use of the colors and the use of the brush to denote that emotion.

All three paintings exude contentment by the artist. The Haystack is a more lonely and solitude picture in which the viewer can sit and contemplate life while gazing at the simple lines and meaning behind the painting. In the next two the willingness of society and culture to be upbeat and social is displayed in the works. The use of color and motion both provide indicators of the political and cultural attitude of the era.


Grainstack 1891

http://www.oceansbridge.com/art/customer/product.php?productid=38385& cat=4037& page=19& maincat=M

Pierre Bonnard The Terrace


Paul Signac The windmills http://www.aacwebkiosk.com/Obj6541$1,650

baroque sculptures http://www.romeartlover.it/Sculptures.html

coat of arms http://members.tripod.com/romeartlover/Juv33.html



National Romanticism


Diane the Huntress


http://www.rastko.org.yu/isk/images/simeon_roksandic.html… [read more]

Art Historian W.J.T. Mitchell Asserted Term Paper

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Combined with his attachment to the Catalan heritage, Miro sought a certain universality in expression. In 1918, he found this thread of commonality in landscape, to which he devoted himself. He was particularly thrilled by the areas of Montroig, where he reproduced a "calligraphy" with his brush, a lyrical stroke "blade of grass by blade of grass, tile by tile."… [read more]

Art and Humanities Term Paper

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The Age of Baroque followed the Renaissance, and while the art was still deeply religious in nature and supported by the Catholic Church, the style was changing again. By the end of the Late Renaissance, art had settled into the "Mannerism" style, and Baroque was an attempt to get away from this type of art that was technically very correct… [read more]

19th Century Art During Term Paper

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19th Century Art

During the 19th century, a great number of revolutionary changes altered forever the face of art and those that produced it. Compared to earlier artistic periods, the art produced in the 19th century was a mixture of restlessness, obsession with progress and novelty, and a ceaseless questioning, testing and challenging of all authority. Old certainties about art… [read more]

20th Century Art History's Response Term Paper

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("Edward Hopper," Art Archive, 2005)

Rockwell's nostalgia is often said to be reminiscent of plays such as Thornton Wilder's "Our Town." In contrast, Hopper's paintings have been compared to the realist plays of Ibsen, a writer whom the artist admired, because of their "deliberate, disciplined sparseness, and modern bleakness and simplicity. However, some say they are also full of a different kind of nostalgia than Rockwell, a nostalgia "for the puritan virtues of the American past," a sad nostalgia in contrast to the upbeat nostalgia of Rockwell, or the sad yet forward thinking social criticism of Sternberg's canvas. Though Hopper's compositions are supposedly realist they also make frequent use of covert symbolism, unlike the more blatant realism of Sternberg and Rockwell. Rockwell's television represents the positive aspects of modern technology, however confusing, while Sternberg, the negative -- in Hopper it is less clear if humanity is making the sterile trap of the office, or if technology is creating the sterile affair.

In contrast to the private gaze fixed upon the earlier chroniclers of human responses to technology, Hopper and Sternberg, Norman Rockwell captured the attention of millions of Americans with his 322 Saturday Evening Post covers. Unlike the paintings displayed in galleries and specifically designated artistic spaces, " every week at approximately the same time, millions of households across the country received The Saturday Evening Post and thus "the way most people were introduced to Rockwell images" was in "close up." (Knuston, 18)

A painting like "The Office at Night," instructs the viewer about loneliness and "The Family-Industry and Agriculture" depicts the American farmer, but Rockwell created a sense of intimacy rather than forceful instruction in his "The New Television Set," because Rockwell's "paintings were not meant to be experienced within the formal and controlled environment of a museum." (Knuston 18) One could say that the reason Rockwell seems so conservative to viewers is that they are experienced in isolation, outside of social experiences, unlike museums. "Subscribers could look at a Post cover and feel that they were looking at themselves or their neighbors ... The naughty child, the doctor, the babysitter, the dentist, the grandfather, the mom and dad." (Knuston 18)

In contrast to the large canvases of the social realist Sternberg and the urban realist Hopper, Rockwell's magazine covers were meant to make the gazer and reader feel as if they were about ordinary Americans, like "us." Of course, 'we' are workers on farms and in cities perhaps more like the words Hopper and Sternberg, but Rockwell created more of an optimistic image of normalcy that Americans longed to accept in the post-war cultural climate. Although Rockwell did not portray 'reality' he did portrayed what post-war America wished and willed American and Americans to resemble, in image.

Before one cries Rockwell overmuch it is important to remember, in conclusion, that he was above all a commercial artist, and unlike the critique of technology of Sternberg and Hopper, he was creating art to sell a magazine, a magazine that… [read more]

Vedder's "Memory" -- Remembering Term Paper

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And although the American Vedder, after studying in Paris from 1856 -- 61, returned to the United States at the outbreak of the Civil War, he mainly supported himself by illustrating comic valentines and calisthenics books and drawing for popular magazines such as Vanity. He isolated himself from any sociological or political context as an artist, or even from any… [read more]

Avant-Garde Concept in Modern Art Term Paper

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¶ … avant-garde concept in modern art, and how various artists and movements attempted to achieve social and artistic changes.

Avant-garde in art refers to a small group of painters who formed their own "Salon" after being refused acceptance by the official Paris Salon that exhibited the works of established and up-and-coming painters of the 1860s. The "refues" created the Salon des Refuses that exhibited their artworks that had been rejected by the Salon. Some of the artists who exhibited at the Salon des Refuses included Camille Pissarro, Paul Cezanne, edouard Manet, and James McNeill Whistler, who would all go on to have successful careers as Impressionist, modernist, naturalist and other types of artists. Avant-garde came to mean breakthrough or progress and reform, and each of these artists fought for their artwork to be accepted by the population and critics, but they also fought for social reform and change in their own society.

Avant-garde may have begun in the 19th century, but it continues through the 20th century, and can also refer to anything outside the normal art world. For example, some people consider graffiti to be modern day avant-garde art. In the 20th century, painters such as Picasso and Dali, who dabbled in modern arts like Cubism and Dadaism were considered avant-garde artists. Throughout artistic change, those leaders of change were the avant-garde artists who would someday become accepted and admired.

Through their art, they changed what was accepted in the art world, but they also made social commentaries about what was happening in society. For example, in 1938, Picasso painted "Guernica," an emotional reaction to the bombing of a Spanish Basque town by Nazi bombers. The painting has remained one of his most famous and well-known, as much for its depiction of the destroyed town and some of the victims as for its staunch and clear stand against the brutality of the Nazis. These artists were not afraid to stand up for what they believed in, and they wanted to change society to become a better…… [read more]

Visual Arts Andy Warhol's "Self-Portrait 1986" Versus Term Paper

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Visual Arts

Andy Warhol's "Self-Portrait 1986" versus "Self-Portrait" by Chuck Close: A visit to the Columbus Museum of Art.

In this paper I plan to compare two original paintings currently housed in the Columbus Museum of Art in Columbus Ohio. I have chosen two self-portrait as my subjects, each from American Artists of the 20th Century. The first painting I… [read more]

Paintbrush -- My Artist's Pen Term Paper

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¶ … Paintbrush -- My Artist's Pen:

Why a Paintbrush is an Essential Item to create my Art on Canvas

My paintbrush is like my right hand -- or my best friend. It is an implement, an item, and a tool. But it is also like a friend, for whenever I wish to express myself, it is always there to help me speak on the canvas, and to unburden my soul through the use of lines, textures, and shading. This is why a paintbrush is such a unique and necessary part of the creation of my art, and perhaps every person's development of artistic skills, even if the artist ultimately chooses another medium to pursue professionally. Yes, art can be made with many other tools. Art can be molded from clay. Art can be sprayed from a bottle of paint. Art can be created from cutting into the surface of stone. Art can be created with computer graphics. But because of the paintbrush's ability to spread color and create images as a painting tool, because of its ability to create different marks and textures with the brush fibers, and because of the paint brush's ability to be used when creating art with other media, the paintbrush remains an essential part of my artist's tool kit and every developing artist's tool kit.

First of all, a painting brush can be used in many different ways to create art, even in a single work. A paintbrush is commonly used for painting, and to use it well is important for an artist, just as learning to blend colors, or to observe and plan the subject and the perspective of the painting carefully, when working from life. No matter how many people create art with other artistic media, from computer dots to a block of granite, painting will always have a uniquely important place in the history of Western art. This is one reason why it is so important, too, for art students seeking to learn about artistic technique and to find their voice as artists, to learn how to use a paintbrush. When a student uses different kinds of paintbrushes, paint, and techniques of painting, the student can better understand and learn from great works of Western painting. Learning how to use the paintbrush in one's own art better enables the student to draw from the works of the past, and use these works to fire his or her own artistic imagination in the future.

Yes, sketching is the first thing a student learns. But painting in color is the next logical step to learning how to become an artist. From learning how to create black and white sketches, artists proceed to painting to show the world in bright and unique colors. Although a knife or even fingers can be used to create art through sculpting or splattering on paint, brushes are still the 'pen' of the artist's trade, from which other techniques begin. An artist learns how to use a brush before… [read more]

Paintings Sloop, Nassau by Winslow Homer Term Paper

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¶ … Paintings

Sloop, Nassau" by Winslow Homer is a haunting painting of a small ship towing a boat on cloudy, stormy seas. The painting is peaceful, and yet the clouds are menacing somehow. While it would not seem emotional, it is, just because of the vibrancy of the colors and the thick brushstrokes of the work. It seems as if the two non-descript figures on board are sailing into harm's way, somehow. While Homer's painting is realistic if a bit stylized, Auerbach's work, "Head of Michael Podro," is entirely the opposite. The figure is fairly recognizable as human, but that is about all. Auerbach's angular lines and stark colors make the head of the person seem like an alien somehow, and Auerbach definitely does not work in realism. Like the "Sloop," Auerbach's work is disquieting somehow, but more because his portraits are so unreal and so ghostly, somehow.

A much prefer the Homer piece, even though it also…… [read more]

Outsider Art Term Paper

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Outsider Art

It is called "Outsider Art," because it stands outside the realm of "fine" art. It is painted by patients in asylums. It is created by prisoners in their cells. It is made up by untrained artists and thus considered self-taught. It also goes by other names: na f, naive, Art Brut, to list the most common. Tattoos were… [read more]

Art and Society Term Paper

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Art and Society

An Analysis and Discussion of Gender Construction in the Toilet of Venus (1647-51) by Diego Velasquez

While women in the United States and the United Kingdom have enjoyed the right to vote for several decades now, things were very different at the turn of the 20th century when the suffragettes emerged to challenge the male-dominated status quo… [read more]

What Does Beauty Mean in Art Today? Term Paper

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¶ … beauty" mean in art today?

The concept of beauty is not a linear concept, we can point out from the very beginning towards the fact that the modern concept of beauty has evolved and has developed from beauty in the Antiquity or Middle Ages, up to modern times. In today's environment, when we talk about modernism and postmodernism… [read more]

Three Dimensional Art Term Paper

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Woman Addressing the Public

Joan Mir, a Spanish artist who lived from 1893-1983, painted this work. He sculpted this work, "Woman Addressing the Public: Project for a Monument" in 1980-81, only two years before his death, in the late 1620s, in a very modernistic, surrealistic style. It is sculpted in bronze, sized 12 ft. 2-1/2 in. x 8 ft. (372.1 x 243.8 cm). The Kimbell Art Museum acquired the piece in 1996, and it stands at the entrance to the museum.

This arresting three-dimensional sculpture is a modernistic figure of a woman with her arms outstretched, supposedly addressing a crowd of onlookers. It also looks as if she were going to embrace them. Her massive "feet" and legs dominate the piece, and it is larger than life, and a good way to greet people arriving at the museum. The line and motion of the piece is all curves and rounded lines, while the overall shape is tall, but rounded, too.

It would not seem that a sculpture would have motion, but this piece does have it in the very design of the piece. The way the arms are outstretched it seems as if the woman is reaching out at that very moment, and this feeling of motion carries the piece and makes it more interesting. What is also interesting is that the motion gives the piece a feeling of lightness, while the actual foundation of the piece is extremely heavy and even awkward. Taken together, the mass of the piece is less noticeable and more appealing somehow.

The lighting of this work of course depends on the natural light surrounding it, and yet it has a light of its own. The shiny black reflects the light, while the bronze piece in front reflects the light even more and draws your eyes to the center of the piece. Even on a cloudy day, this piece has its own form of lighting, which is very interesting to see. The light value of the piece is not bright and shiny, but rich and detailed, and that makes it somehow easier on the eyes somehow.

The texture and pattern of this work at first appears totally smooth, but as you look more deeply at it, there is texture and pattern in the black areas, as though the…… [read more]

Art Development of Artistic Concepts Essay

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Art Dev

Development of Artistic Concepts and Skills Across Grade Levels

The concept of sings, symbolism, and style in artworks is something that requires advanced critical thinking skills to fully appreciate, engage with, and eventually create, and the skill of interpreting and working with signs, symbols, and styles is something that develops over time with concerted effort and practice. Guiding the development of these concepts and skills is something that teachers at various grade levels must appreciate as a continuous and ongoing process, adapting lessons to effectively promote a skill level appropriate to the students' current grade level yet building explicitly on previous learning and remaining equally mindful of future learning to occur in subsequent years. The following pages present the foundations of this concept and skill at the Grade 7 level, and includes lesson plans for Grade 9 and 10 as well.

Concept and Skill Progression from Grades 7 to 10

The concept of symbols, signs, and individualistic style choices and the skill of reading and interpreting these signs, etc., should be present and enhanced in Grade 7 coursework (Sickinger, n.d.). Simply put, the skill involved is the ability to interpret abstract concepts such as emotions, ideals, and philosophical or political statements from visual elements included in artwork, with the concept of these visual elements divided into distinct groups of signs, symbols, and stylistic choices (Hickman, 2004; Sickinger, n.d.). Almost any work of art could be examined as a means of illustrating the concept and skills involved, though there are some choices that are more explicit or obvious than others (Sickinger, n.d.).

With the foundation of the concept and skill established in Grade 7, it is fairly easy to trace the progression of these elements through subsequent grades of schooling. In Grade 8, the ability for students to interpret the signs, symbols, and styles they encounter should expend to more subtle, nuanced, and complex geopolitical situations, allegorical references, and other less-obvious or -- familiar phenomena (Hickman, 2004; Sickinger, n.d.). In Grade 9, the concept should expand to include not simply the individual visual elements of an artwork but the overall organization of signs, symbols, and stylistic choices within a given work of art and within a given time period, enhancing the interpretative skill still further (Sickinger, n.d.). Finally, by Grade 10 students should be able to fully utilize signs, symbols, and conscious stylistic choices in their own creative expression, showing mastery of the skill and concepts through their own manipulation and creation rather than simple interpretation (Sickinger, n.d.).

Grade 9 Lesson Plan

Primary Task: Examining the painting Guernica by Pablo Picasso, students are to write a paper explaining the organization of the visual elements of the work and their relevance to the historical and artistic context of the work's creation.

Learning Objective: Students connect personal reactions to aesthetic elements with historical events and artistic trends. Historical knowledge and critical thinking are utilized to develop complex interpretations of individual aesthetic elements and their cohesion within a single piece of artwork.… [read more]

Integrated Arts Research Paper

Research Paper  |  3 pages (1,045 words)
Bibliography Sources: 3


Art Interview

An Interview with Two Artists

Two Post-Impressionists, Paul Gauguin and Vincent Van Gogh became friends in the late 19th century in Paris, France. They lived together for a time in Arles in the famous "Yellow House," until Van Gogh fell ill and was hospitalized and Gauguin left for other parts of the world to pursue his vocation as an artist. An interview with these two painters reveals the dynamic of their relationship at this time and the essence of their craft and what they were trying to achieve through their unique approaches to painting. Both have left behind some brilliant pieces of work. This paper will discuss with them how they approached their art and how their friendship affected their painting.

Q: You both spent time in Paris. What did you gain from the art scene there?

Gaugin: "I was born in Paris, of course, and returned there after parting ways with my family. I was very much interested in the Impressionistic style all around me. I was looking for something real in life -- something that transcended the insipid reality that everyone was busy manufacturing for himself. Paris offered a glimpse -- but only a glimpse. I had to keep going further and further -- beyond the reach of urban life."

Van Gogh: "I was embracing Impressionism and using it to reflect the world in a real way. But whether I was painting Fritillaries for a love interest or for my own does not take away from the fact that my spirit was now alive with an intensity that was as bright and fervent as my religious soul had been a decade earlier. However, my heart was not content to stay in the city: thus I traveled to Arles to study and paint the scenes and images that had inspired my early works like the Potato Eaters -- only now the same scenes and settings would be bright, alive, and soulful. I was becoming overwhelmed by the beauty and grace in nature and in people." (Johnson 607)

Q: What was your biggest inspiration?

Gaugin: "I can say that life itself was an inspiration. The mystery of it all. Who are we? Where are we going? My paintings address these questions because I feel they are important. We do not take enough time to properly address them. All around us is a mad rush of activity and ideas, but no or little discernment. Little reflection, meditation. I'm inspired by the idea of natural, primitive beauty."

Van Gogh: "God is the inspiration. His presence in all things, in us -- our attempt to measure up to him. It is a struggle. I see that struggle and enter into it. It is not an easy thing to do. I have been called mad by many, insane, crazy. I cut off my ear, hear voices, shoot myself. But am I crazy? I wanted to be a missionary in my younger days, but could not. Art is an outlet through which I… [read more]

Art in South America and the Pacific Term Paper

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Art in South America and the Pacific

Aboriginal Creation Myths and Art

The Aborigines have existed for approximately 40,000 years in parts of Australia. They boast one of the most ancient cultures in the world that is as varied as the people themselves throughout different regions of this continent. Due to the length of time that this civilization has existed,… [read more]

Modern Art of the Twenty First Century Thesis

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Modern Art of the 21st Century

Throughout the course of history, artists have used a number of different techniques in illustrating their ideas and thoughts about particular images. This is because various tactics utilized in the past were often incorporated into contemporary thinking. In the 21st century, these views are being used to tell a unique story by embracing these… [read more]

Art Is Contingent Research Paper

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This particular piece of artwork reflects what I believe to be the true definition of art. It encompasses the feelings of the artist, a reflection of an idea, the statement of a thought, and the openness to interpretation based on the viewer. This piece of artwork can be interpreted in so many different ways, that it will mean something different to every single person that encounters it. Some will relate this painting to a social or political issue, while others will understand it to be a reflection of how they are feeling at the moment. It is these key aspects that define what art is.

The Persistence of Memory uses darker, gray-toned colors. Clocks seem to droop and from odd and unconventional places. The environment is an open one. In the background, cliff-like mountain structures are seen that lead to a reflective body of water. The clocks are present in the darker areas and are all made to resemble stop watches. On the floor of the painting is what looks like a portion of a face, with a clearly outlined closed eye with eyelashes attached. The texture of the painting is a smooth one. Every structure has a rounded corner, even in areas where sharp characteristics may have been more appropriate to use. The dark background of the bottom two thirds of the painting allow for the structures drawn on it to stand out. This is where the artist wants his viewers to focus more on because this is where the main point of his artwork lays. This artwork is meant to represent the peacefulness that one feels after drifting off to sleep. The closed eye on the floor of the painting demonstrates this. The droopy hanging clocks symbolize our loss of the notion of time while sleeping. When people dream, there is no sense of anything that is going on consciously. The only reality that one experiences is that of the unconscious mind. This painting symbolizes that time during which people are in between two worlds, both of which are realities at the time. It is this exact reason why this painting is particularly intriguing. Its openness to interpretation allows viewers to relate more to…… [read more]

Art History: The Impressionists Baroque Term Paper

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Different aspects of baroque art were determined by religion. For example the church of Roman Catholic became a great influential patron, as well as its Counter Reformation. As it aimed at spreading Protestantism, it uses dramatic, realistic and emotional art to propagate their faith. Countries like northern Germany and Netherlands as well indicate simplicity of Protestantism by explaining the severity of architectural styles within these areas. Art was also influenced through politics circumstances. For example the existed monarchies of Spain and France facilitated the coming up of art works reflecting splendor and size of the majesty of their kings, Philip IV and Louis XIV.

Characteristics of Baroque

Some of the characteristics of baroque art generally are tension, energy, and sense of movement. Their dramatic effects of most of the sculptures and paintings are enhanced by the strong contrasts of shadow and light. Baroque buildings together with their undulating walls as well as decorated surface elements also indicated motion with contrasts in color and light. Baroque art always presents intense spirituality, for example countries which are influenced by Roman Catholic tend to commonly have scenes of martyrdoms, ecstasies, or miraculous apparitions. Contrary to the units that were present within Renaissance, baroque sculptures or paintings always suggests infinite space. Another important integral feature of baroque art is realism, where the painted figures are not types; they are persons with their own personalities. Most of the artist who were concerned with how the inner mind works tried to bring out passions of the soul on their work of art.


Some of the nations have continued to experience baroque especially in European colonies within the Americas. Through social, religious and political influence they have been derived and painted to signify the intended theme.


Thames & Hudson, (1985). Development of 17th- and 18th-century Western European art. http://www.uib.no/ped/baroque.html… [read more]

Satyr With the Grapes: Food in Ancient to Modern Art Essay

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food from ancient to modern art. The image of the Satyr with the grapes

The significance of the influence that ancient Greek has on the industry of wines in all the regions across the world is remarkable. Greek carries long histories of wine, and the cultivation of olive and the vine. These plants bear grapes used to brew the wines, a state that existed from the ancient times the early years of the nation. Ancient Greek pioneered methods of cultivating and producing wine, which it then passed to the other winemaking communities in the modern era. Similarly, art was a subject of development in ancient Greece. Paintings were a way of expression and intimacy with the surrounding environment. Among the themes used in this period are still in use to date, for various reasons.

Satyrs treading grapes in an amphora of Athens, about 530-520 B.C,

The painting Amphora with satyrs treading grapes is a masterpiece created in the Greek archaic period. The painting is on a black, two-handled, ceramic jar, with a black figure on the image. This painting shows the satyr carrying a basket of grapes as they cross some water on a boat. This theme sets the stage for most other paintings in both the modern and the ancient times to grow and develop. Several artists and painters applied the theme of using the grapes and the black aspect of the painting.

Statue of a Satyr Holding Grapes, Versailles, 1672, Vues et Plans de Versailles, c.1672-8,

The painting of the statue of Satyr holding grapes originates from French nationality. The painting is spectacular in its engraving aspect and borrows the theme of the use of grapes in the painting. Therefore, it is clear that this painting, made several years after the Amphora painting, uses the same theme of grapes and wine industry in the country. Therefore, it conclusively indicates that the modern artwork draws inspirations and remarkable painting techniques for the artists. The statue holds a bunch of grapes in the hands; hence the utilization of the theme of grapes and their meaning. This is a spectacular work of art; done on the principle of ancient Greece painting from a different nation shows the extent of the application of the theme.

Satyr Playing with Eros (1877)

This painting is among the surviving works of its time and type. It is a painting of the ancient Greek art, using modern artwork systems. The painting shows satyr playing with Ethos, a system that depicts understanding of the ancient world. This painting elicits the feeling that the artwork was a universal communication channel, in which artists used same themes to develop themselves, and the issue of producing works similar to being original can test a painter's ability. In the aspect of using satyr, the painting gives the interpretation of life as carefree and; therefore, the aspects of testing for the quality of the painting and the themes. From this painting, satyr identifies himself with Ethos and this portrays satyr as Greek… [read more]

Interpretation of Specific Works of Art Essay

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¶ … works of Art

The Hallucinogenic Toreador is an oil painting and as indicated on its footnote description was painted between the years 1968-1970 by Salvador Dali while taking care of the canons of his understanding of surrealist thought. Currently this piece of art is exhibited at Salvador Dali Museum found in St. Petersburg in Florida.

Elements and principles of design in the painting

Elements of art are the things which are most visuals in the particular artwork. There are various formal elements of art that the artists used in his artwork. They include; color, this entails the visual and perpetual property that is found within an image. The intensity, purity, strength and depth of the colors used in a painting immensely contribute to the feel and purpose of the painting. For instance Dali used warm and inviting colors in his painting. These colors draw viewers into the painting. The right side of the painting comprises of warm colors ranging from pink to orange at the top extending to a red cloth which is draped around the waist of Venus de Milo.

Another element of art that is visibly used in this painting is shape. Shape is described by anatomy, contour and configuration of the objects. The painting has various images that are in repetition. In such a painting whereby one can make little sense out of it, the repetition of images that can be recognized creates an anchor which the viewers can embrace. This is even when they are not quite aware of t6he reason for the repetition. The image combines the use of versatile images as an illustration of the artistic creation of the artist. Dali mastered the art of hiding images in his work. For instance, the bust and torso of Venus clad in white and green comprise the toreador's face. Another hidden image is the shadow under her left breast which was also his nose's shadow as seen on the display.

Value is another formal element of art that has been used in this painting. Value refers to the specific tone of color that has been used for the emphasis and accentualization of the particular artwork the brightness of the painting has been balanced in such a way that there is a skillful use of shadings and colors.

Principles are concepts which are used during the organization and arrangement of structural elements of design in a piece of art. The manner in which these principles are applied has an effect on the expressive content or even the message the artwork is intended to portray. Balance is the concept of visual equilibrium that relates to the physical sense of balance. Balance in artwork is achieved in asymmetrical and symmetrical ways. The images within the painting are properly balanced in both symmetrical and asymmetrical ways. The finishing of the image is so good such that anyone observing it fails to notice the double image quality that is found in the artwork.

Proportion refers to the relative scale… [read more]

Mathematics and Art Research Paper

Research Paper  |  2 pages (558 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1


This is a fairly new field, which may fall under another fairly new field, called Software Studies, which has been pioneered by Lev Manovich. Both men are highly educated and on the cutting edge of their respective studies and activities, making data visualization a hot topic and a fashionable trend that continues to gain in popularity and in utility.

There are professionals throughout the world who ask and argue whether or not data visualization is art because it is driven and contingent upon data, which is mathematical and scientific in nature. No matter where the visualization comes from, it is a form of expression that is expressed artistically and with great consideration for aesthetics.

In addition to the data visualization itself, there is a whole range of graphic design decisions that must be made in order for the visualization to come to fruition. Some of those decisions include the layout, color scheme/palette, font selection, composition, size, and many elements that add visual hierarchy and structure that are all opportunities for creativity. The decisions that creators must make in order to create the best representation of the data are of the same order of decisions that artists make when they make a sculpture, painting, drawing, or installation. Additionally, in some ways, artists make mathematical and scientific decisions for their art. The arguments over whether data visualization is mathematical or artistic further illustrates the earlier point that the lines between math and art no longer exist, and perhaps were quite illusory in the first place.


Meersschaert, K. (2012). Does Math + Art = Teachable Data Visualization? Columbia University, Web, Available from: http://edlab.tc.columbia.edu/index.php?q=node/8057. 2013 June 14.… [read more]

Material World and Meaning Essay

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Style: MLA  |  Bibliography Sources: 2


Art can be used to express sociological meanings and worldviews. American artist Andy Warhol understood this aspect of art as a political and social tool, and applied that to his work. One of Warhol's most famous works of art is actually a series in which he painted Campbell's Soup cans in a colorful "pop art" kitch manner. One of the most notable of the soup can series is known as "100 Cans." In this painting, Warhol renders the labels of 100 Campell's Tomato Soup cans in a grid. There is great uniformity to the design, which stretches to fill the entire canvas. No space on the canvas is left blank because it is filled with the soup cans. Warhol paints the soup cans in a realistic manner. The labels are red and white with a touch of yellow. Although the cans appear to be identical, they are not, as "A close look reveals the fact that the cans are not identical, nor are they evenly spaced. The bottom row is cut off, suggesting that they continue beyond the confines of the canvas."

The art historical context of the Warhol soup cans relates to the pop art phenomenon, in which artists were questioning the relevance of former categories of "high" versus "low" art. While Warhol's soup cans are considered to be fine art, they are also "low" art because they capitalize on imagery in popular culture. Therefore, there is some paradox and irony in the work, which also makes "100 Cans" quintessentially postmodern. When asked why he painted the soup cans, Warhol has stated, "Because I used to drink it. I used to have the same lunch every day, for 20 years, I guess, the same thing over and over again." He is expressing the monotony of eating soup every day in the painting.

However, there are deeper layers to the painting and sociological meaning can be easily read into the Warhol design. For one, the painting communicates much about consumer culture in the United States. Second, the painting conveys elements of mass market foods and the big food conglomerates that control the American diet. Third, the Warhol painting symbolizes suburban America with its track housing and attempts to impose homogeneity and conformity on society. Just as Warhol admits to eating soup every day, he paints this to give America a mirror in which to see its own mundane and monotonous habits.

Ironically, the very essence of what Warhol was trying to convey about mass market mentality and consumer culture in America has come true as his painting of the soup cans has actually made its way onto the very soup can Warhol represented. News sources like the New York Times and CNN have featured the phenomenon, showing that the Warhol soup cans are now literally soup cans. Art and consumerism have completely fused together, in ways that Warhol predicted. Whether Warhol would have laughed or cried will never truly be known, but given his astute observations about American popular culture… [read more]

Renaissance Art Response Term Paper

Term Paper  |  2 pages (677 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1+


From the canvas, he seems to be telling the story of his entire life in a series of colored brushstrokes.

During the Renaissance, painters worked diligently to create new ways to depict the human form on canvas and wood. Before this time, artists showed human figures in very flat, two-dimensional ways. Medieval art all show people who do not look like real fully rendered human beings. During the Renaissance, this changed and artists wanted their human subjects to look like they do in the real world. The intention was to create the most realistic depiction of humanity possible in this two-dimensional medium. If one looks carefully at portraiture from this time period, it is evident that of major importance to the artists is the presentation of the subject's face. This perspective is evident in this Rembrandt painting. Even though the face looks blurred from the way the subject was painted, it still gives the impression of being a real person rather than a representation. Rembrandt himself said that in his work he intended to portray the greatest and most natural moment (Hughes 6). This is clear if you look at some of the other self-portraits that Rembrandt made. None of them are stoic, dignified poses but rather there are self-portraits of the artist wearing fancy costumes or making funny faces which he would have made by looking in a mirror.

The self-portrait of Rembrandt allows the modern viewer to see one component of traditional Renaissance art. During this period, artists became very interested in the human body and in particular the human face and how it varied from individual to individual. In this picture, Rembrandt is not handsome nor is he smiling. It does not look like a particularly important moment for him to be capturing, but that is the point, that every moment has merit and should be remembered.

Works Cited

Hughes, Robert. "The God of Realism." The New York Review of Books. 53(6), 2006. Print.

Van de Wetering, Ernst. Rembrandt: the Painter at…… [read more]

Detroit Institute of Arts Essay

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The woman standing on the beach is showing her legs in a pose that suggests the intention of grabbing her companion's attention, but every silhouette in this painting appears to be living in a world of her own, with her own thoughts and preoccupations. No features are visible, but there are stories to be told with every character.

One of the temporary exhibitions going on at the museum is titled "Motor City Muse: Detroit Photographs, Then and Now."

It is one of those exhibitions that offers a glimpse into an urbane, ephemeral world, great artists like Henry Cartier Bresson, Robert Franck or Bill Rauhauser were able to capture and make it permanent.

Van Gogh's "Bedroom in Arles," lend by the Musee d'Orsay in Paris, until May 28, 2013, has joined in exhibition the other paintings by Van Gogh at the DIA.

An upcoming exhibition is dedicated to the New York based, contemporary artist, Shirin Neshat's video installations and art photography. The exhibition will be accompanied by a lecture given by Alfredo Jaar on April 3rd, a preview celebration on April 6th, a lecture conversation between the artist herself and Nobel Prize laureate, Shirin Ebadi, moderated by Culumbia University's Professor of Iranian Studies and Comparative Literature, Hamid Dabashi.

Another interesting exhibition, coming up, will be dedicated to the animated film, this time. Starting on Sunday, October 6th, "Watch Me Move, the Animation Show," will be open to those who are keen to find out more about the animation world, as it evolved over a period of 150 years. Personal appearances by contemporary animators at the Detroit Film Theater will punctuate the exhibition.

The Detroit Institute of Arts is two blocks away from, I-94 and its busy intersection with other highways, thus easily accessible from all directions. Street parking is available on all four streets enclosing the museum. There are two parking lots for paid self-parking and also valet parking available.

Those who want to find out more about a subject or an exhibition, can participate in the museum's daily public or private tours, can listen to one of the multiple lectures or a concert, or try to make art of their own in one of the art workshops.

The museum is kid and family friendly and it offers family group tours and field trips.

There is a Wayne and Joan Webber Education Wing with spaces dedicated to educational programs.

The "Family Sundays" include a puppet performance and various artist demonstrations, each Sunday.

The museum's shop sells jewelry, pottery, books, albums, office stationary, souvenirs, puzzles, exhibition catalogues, DVDs, T-shirts, wall art, accessories, articles dedicated to kids, like toys, books, games etc. Some of them at reasonable prices, some, like some jewelry pieces, porcelain and glass items, especially those supporting the local producers, more on the expensive side.

For food and beverages there are CafeDIA and Cresge Court Coffe Shop that are available for those who want to take a break, find a meeting place or rest and enjoy a cup of coffee… [read more]

Michelangelo's Sistine Chapel Term Paper

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Bibliography Sources: 5


While there is literal and symbolic meaning in the ceiling's content, it is also significant to consider the reality that the artist experienced to create this masterpiece. What the artist went through as part of the creative endeavor is a noteworthy aspect of the context within which the painting was created.

The paintings on the walls and on the ceiling… [read more]

Dadaism and Surrealism Essay

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Style: APA  |  Bibliography Sources: 1+



To cut a long story short, Dadaism and Surrealism have influenced history in a very radical and effective manner. Having a lot of similarities, both the movements differ only on few grounds. Not only did the Surrealists produce paintings, they also did marvelous works in the field of film, theatre, comedy and contemporary cultures. The influence of the discussed two historical art periods is significant and would remain be on the future art.


ART BOOKS OF THE YEAR; Van Gogh's Letters, Grayson Perry's Pots a Scholarly Study of Caravaggio and a Glimpse into the World of the Insane Henry Darger -- Just a Few of the Treats Guaranteed to Give Pleasure This Christmas. (2009, December 10). The Evening Standard (London, England), p. 48. Retrieved June 27, 2012, from Questia database: http://www.questia.com/PM.qst?a=o&d=5038833735

Dada. (2009). In The Columbia Encyclopedia (6th ed.). New York: Columbia University Press. Retrieved June 27, 2012, from Questia database: http://www.questia.com/PM.qst?a=o&d=117013882

Essak, S. (n.d.). Dada - Art History 101 Basics: The Non-Art Movement (1916-23). Retrieved June 27, 2012 from http://arthistory.about.com/cs/arthistory10one/a/dada.htm

MobileReference. (2007). Encyclopedia of philosophy for smartphones and mobile devices - free 3 chapters in the trial version. Boston: MobileReference.com. Retrieved June 27, 2012 from http://books.google.com.pk/books?id=cHI3qGaX9DsC&pg=PT440&dq=dada+art+movement&hl=en&sa=X&ei=hFKWT-_dA-el4gSjr9xG&ved=0CFcQ6AEwBw#v=onepage&q=dada%20art%20movement&f=false

Surrealism. (2009). In The Columbia Encyclopedia (6th ed.). New York: Columbia University Press. Retrieved June 27, 2012, from Questia database: http://www.questia.com/PM.qst?a=o&d=117047965

Willette, J.S.M. (2011, June 17). Comparison of Dada and Surrealism. Retrieved June 27, 2012 from http://www.arthistoryunstuffed.com/comparison-of-dada-and-surrealism/… [read more]

Visual Art Vincent Van Gogh Term Paper

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Bibliography Sources: 1+


However, this portrait in the painting was replaced by the portrait of a woman in the replica that was made in 1771 (Hulsker, 1996).

Van Gogh's work can now be dated accurately since the profiled work has now been proven to be original. It was in the Letter 555 (17 October 1888) that Van Gogh wrote "in order to let you know that I have completed the canvas that represent my bedroom this afternoon I am adding a line" (Vincent Gallery 2012).

Due to all these letter by Van Gogh in which he has mentioned such details most of his work could be dated with a lot of precision.


During Van Gogh's time in Paris it can be seen that his work constitutes of very bright and striking colours. Vincent's Bedroom in Arles also has this same usage of bold and striking colours. During Gogh's Arles and Saint-Remy period it seems like yellow became his favourite colour as he has used it in his work a lot (Vincent Gallery 2012).

Van Gogh's work especially the one that he has done in the latter half of his career shows the use of unique perspective. Even in his painting of the bedroom all the objects seem to be pointing towards the viewer; this is one of the factors that make his painting so easily recognizable. Van Gogh started rebelling against the muted and dull colours used by the Dutch artists at the time with the use of bold and bright colours in his work (The Seated Zouave and The Night Cafe in the Place Lamartine in Arles, can be seen for example) (Vincent Gallery 2012).

There is another interesting perspective present about the Van Gogh's work. According to Ronald Pickvance, Van Gogh's work shows a more realistic approach. According to Pickvance in his book Van Gogh in Arles, the shape of Van Gogh's room was quite different because of which he had to draw it in the way he did. Therefore, it was not his artistic perspective rather the actual appearance of the room which made him draw the painting like he did. The actual shape of Gogh's room can be seen in the diagram when it is held at a particular angle (Pickvance, 1984).

Other versions

As it has been mentioned above that there are five versions of Van Gogh's bedroom in Arles, from among these three are oil on canvas and two are letter sketches. At the time when Gogh was in the asylum under voluntary confinement two copies of the painting were made. Later on, Gogh himself made a lot of copies during his early days in the asylum. It was his way of showing his lonely life that he was leading in the asylum. This has also been told by him to his friends in Arles as well (Vincent Gallery 2012).

There are many people who believed that in the original painting Van Gogh has expressed his dreams and wishes. Gogh wanted to build a community for… [read more]

Maori Art Research Paper

Research Paper  |  4 pages (1,279 words)
Bibliography Sources: 4


As such, there has not been any way to yet find what a large set of carvings may mean. One particularly interesting argument suggests that the Mako was a way of separating the Maori men and women from the realm of life and death. As it had a holy significance, the carvings could have been either a source of protection from death or a means of being unified with the dead (Gathercole 177). Since each of the various Maori tribes had a different set of symbols, it would be quite difficult to translate since a similar icon could mean a very many different things depending upon who it was that was asked of from what tribe that person belonged.

As the art world has expanded, museums and art collectors have become interested in amassing collections of art which include historic artifacts. There are examples of Maori carvings in locations where the original creators of the pieces could never have envisioned. Rather than religiously import artifacts, sculptures of the Maori culture are placed upon shelves and pedestals, given the same importance as a painting from the Renaissance or an installment from the modern art movement, but they are given no more. The religious and cultural import of the piece has been completely erased and instead it is only appreciated in terms of the aesthetic.

In the article "The Maori Carver" by R.W. Firth, he describes the way that the artifacts from the Maori culture are looked upon as pieces of art rather than as artifacts of an ancient culture. This, the author argues, is completely inappropriate because this removes the Maori items from their historical context and thus deprives them of meaning besides the aesthetic. Firth writes:

In order to appreciate the full value of the art it is necessary to study it not only in Museum show-cases, where it is as a thing dead and set apart, but also as far as possible in its original and natural setting in the villages and homes of the people, where it is full of life and character (1).

This is an important perspective because it highlights the difficulty between appreciating an artifact for its beauty and understanding a work in light of its cultural, historical, and sociological context.

The Maori culture is exemplified by the art that was created, just as art of any culture fulfills the role as historian and works as testimony to their culture. For the Maori, the process called Mako which is the carving of the skin of people of the Maori culture, was a symbol of their culture and served as a representation of what was important to them. That ancient culture could never have guessed that modern peoples would take items that were of sacred and holy importance to them and to display them for the entire world to see. Based upon the way they treated even the scraps from their wood carvings, it is highly unlikely that they would have appreciated their icons being treated… [read more]

Country Maid Art Analysis Research Paper

Research Paper  |  3 pages (1,093 words)
Bibliography Sources: 2


Pissarro often painted working-class women, and some of his other well-known works include The Maidservant, Washerwoman, and A Young Woman Washing Dishes. Pissarro painted the darker side of rural life, unlike his fellow Impressionists who enjoyed showing the beauty of unspoiled nature. "The key theme of domestic labor is linked, in turn, to Pissarro's views on agricultural labor and the market economy" and in domestic servitude in The Little Country Maid.[footnoteRef:1] [1: "Groundbreaking perspective on Camille Pissarro opens at the Legion of Honor this fall," Art Daily, December 12, 2011, http://www.artdaily.com/index.asp?int_sec=11&int_new=51257&int_modo=1]

Pissarro was the lone Impressionist who made domestic workers his central focus, just as much as Degas focused on ballet dancers and Monet upon flowers. Pissarro was described as a political radical during his era, and this is manifest in his depiction of the maid and in his other work. "Scholars have tended to treat Pissarro's politics and his art in two separate categories, often refusing to see the most basic connections between them. This is largely because Pissarro was less a political activist than a social and economic philosopher.[footnoteRef:2]" However, although his work has a clear ideological perspective, it is also characterized by humanism and respect for the subject. The maid is not objectified to make a political point. [2: Ibid.]

Pissarro's work recalls that of Vermeer's servant girls, although instead of Vermeer's glowing and illuminated women, Pissarro's woman is in the shadows. She is not beautiful, although she is not obviously 'lower class' other than her clothing. She is an ordinary woman, an 'every woman' with whom the gazer is encouraged to identify. In terms of its physical qualities, the painting is oil on canvas. It is a relatively small painting, only 2'1 by 1'19 in width and diameter.[footnoteRef:3] The shadowy nature of the painting is relatively distinct, and stands in contrast to the brightness characteristic of Pissarro's Impressionist contemporaries Monet and Renoir. The brushstrokes are typical of the Impressionist period: "relatively small, thin, yet visible brush strokes; open composition; emphasis on accurate depiction of light in its changing qualities; common, ordinary subject matter; the inclusion of movement as a crucial element of human perception and experience; and unusual visual angles.[footnoteRef:4]" [3: "The Little Country Maid," Juggle References, December 12, 2011, http://www.juggle.com/the-little-country-maid] [4: Ibid.]

In his book Pissarro's People, the art historian and scholar Richard R. Brettell states that Pissarro was an anarchist who used representations of the material world to convey his ideas. This can be seen in the quiet yet lifelike maid. Although the motion of the painting does not arrest the viewer, the maid's containment and sense of a forcibly concealed inner life is poignant and haunting. The work is testimony to the fact that Impressionism can be 'political' in nature, and not merely a subjective rendering of an artist's momentary state of consciousness.


Brettell, Richard. Pissarro's People. Prestel, 2011.

"Groundbreaking perspective on Camille Pissarro opens at the Legion of Honor this fall."

Art Daily. December 12, 2011, http://www.artdaily.com/index.asp?int_sec=11&int_new=51257&int_modo=1

"The Little Country Maid."… [read more]

Art Both Duccio Di Buoninsegna Term Paper

Term Paper  |  4 pages (1,384 words)
Bibliography Sources: 4


Manchester: Manchester University Press, 1997, p. 1; 6]

The underlying messages and meanings of the two paintings are different. Lippi is showing Jesus as the bearer of the Book, which is the doctrine of the Roman Catholic Church. The book occupies the center point of the composition. Also, the eye is drawn to the background because the left leaf of the book points to a scroll that one of the angels is holding. The scroll and the book together refer to the Catholic teachings. Lippi is not painting the maternal love between Virgin Mary and Baby Jesus, as de Buoninsegna does. Unlike Lippi, di Buoninsegna is concerned more with the ability to convey universal maternal love. The purpose of the de Buoninsegna painting of the Madonna is to portray the love that Mary has for Jesus and vice-versa. For Lippi, the purpose of the painting is more political: to discuss the supremacy of Church doctrine and to show that Jesus is the Logos (Divine Word). Madonna's love is the more important subject to di Buoninsegna, whereas Jesus is the more central subject for Lippi. Lippi accomplishes his subject matter by portraying baby Jesus as the only figure in the composition who is looking directly at the viewer.

These two paintings show the evolution of artistic composition and artistic ability. In di Buoninsegna's painting, the artist does not have a good sense of perspective. For example, the mother's hands are poorly rendered and appear too long, whereas the baby's head looks too small in proportion to its body. If the artist purposely rendered Jesus with his head too small, such as to make Jesus to look more like a little man than like a baby, then he would not have also depicted Jesus as a typical baby reaching out to touch his mother. By the time Lippi produced the "Madonna and Child Enthroned with Two Angels," artists had grasped perspective and form with more finesse than they had one hundred and fifty years before. The figures in Lippi's painting appear more realistic and softer than the stiff images on the di Buoninsegna painting.

The Lippi composition is far more cluttered than the di Buoninsegna one, which has ample blank space. By drawing attention only to the Madonna and child, the viewer contemplates motherly love to the exclusion of most other Christian themes. There are few colors in di Buoninsegna's palette too. On the other hand, Lippi wants the viewer to contemplate various aspects of the Church including its written Logos (Word), which is embodied in both Jesus and the Bible, which he holds. The studious angels in the background also serve to remind the viewer of the importance of dogma and doctrine, not motherly love. The artist uses a range of colors, from deep blues and reds to white and gold.

Paintings of Madonna and Child can differ radically in terms of their theme and composition; this is especially true of di Buoninsegna's "Madonna and Child" and Fra Filippo Lippi's "Madonna… [read more]

Post-Revolutionary French Art Essay

Essay  |  3 pages (967 words)
Bibliography Sources: 3


Grisby also uses the opinion of modern art historians to corroborate her opinions; this also helps to strengthen her argument regarding the significance of Gross's painting.

In her article titled Nudity A la Grecque in 1799, Grisby also sets out to challenge some of the popular notions commonly associated with this work of art. She employs primary sources to support her interpretation of the piece and also to bring to light a broader understanding of the significance of the painting. This understanding is not distracted or hindered by the particulars of the painting. In her article Grisby directly challenges the commonly accepted scholarly interpretation of the piece which claims that it is a representation aimed at reconciling the fractured and divided post-Revolutionary French society using women as mediators due to their familial influence. A signinficant amount of attention is paid to the critical reception of the piece. This is done by Grisby in order to provide a representation of the atmosphere and culture of the time period. The atmosphere and culture of the time period is one that appears politically and socially fractured. Formal Criticisms of the piece allow readers to understand the political and social atmosphere of the time period. It appears that people's opinions regarding the piece were informed and influenced by their social or political standing. The reaction to the nudity of the male warriors in the painting was intended to be an insertion of classical artistic elements often seen in antique Greek and Roman depictions of heroes. The nudity was instead interpreted in a literal sense and allowed no metaphorical significance. This was due to the fact that classical artistic elements like heroic nudity contrasted and conflicted sharply with modern critics of high social standing. Their modern taste for materialism and wealth did not allow them to appreciate an artistic element that was important for Jacques Louis David.

Both of the articles written by Grisby allow provide readers a window that peers into post-Revolutionary French society while at the same time relating how political and social constructs affected the reception and appreciation of art. Grisby's articles describe a time where art is intertwined with politics and social conventions. These social conventions helped changed the art world and vice-versa. Art was evolving because of social and political issues as some of the most important and significant works of the period were commissioned by the government. As Grisby points out however, despite their governmental commission they provided controversy due to their artistic elements and depictions which many times had significant connotations and associations which could be derived from them.

Works Cited

Grimaldo Grisby, Darcy . "Nudity A la Grecque in 1799." Art Bulletin 80.2 (1998): 311-335. Print.

Grimaldo Grisby, Garcy. "Rumor, Contagion, and Colonization…… [read more]

Sculpture of Artist Henry Moore Term Paper

Term Paper  |  2 pages (758 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1+


Even his earliest sculptures were modernistic and forward thinking, totally leaving the conventional world of art behind.

Moore's prime concern was the material. He loved working in stone, and used it almost exclusively in his work. He especially admired the ability sculpture gave him to create 3-D images, viewable from all sides, and different from all sides. He loved the abstract in design as his works show so effectively. He often wrote about his own work, and once said, "Abstract qualities of design are essential to the value of a work, but to me of equal importance is the psychological, human element. If both abstract and human elements are welded together in a work, it must have fuller, deeper meaning'" (Grohmann 25).

Moore's work still has power today because he tried to create works that meant more to the viewer than just a carved piece of stone. He hoped to give the viewer a complete view of the project, and include elements of humanity and depth. He wanted his work to come alive in the viewers' eyes - another reason he enjoyed working in stone. He hoped the viewer could almost imagine the stone before it was carved, so the actual sculpture would be even more vibrant and alive.

If a work of sculpture has its own life and form, it will be alive and expansive, seeming larger than the stone or wood from which it is carved. It should always give the impression, whether carved or modeled, of having grown organically, created by pressure from within. Henry Moore, 1958, quoted by Edouard Roditi (Editors).

Moore was extremely prolific throughout his lifetime, and critics were not always kind to him. After his death, many museums offered retrospectives of his work, and more than one critic began to realize the import of his work. One critic said his "sheer virtuosity of invention was breathtaking" (Kramer 18). Moore is an artist who many felt was before his time. His work was modern, often misunderstood, but stands the test of time.


Editors. "Henry Moore on the Internet." ArtCyclopedia. 20 July 2002. 24 Oct. 2002. http://www.artcyclopedia.com/artists/moore_henry.html

Grohmann, Will. The Art of Henry Moore. New York H.N. Abrams, 1960.

Kramer, Hilton. "After All These Years,…… [read more]

Art La Berceuse (Woman Rocking Term Paper

Term Paper  |  6 pages (1,703 words)
Bibliography Sources: 0


This alteration captivates the viewer and gives the objects in the picture more form. Like Van Gogh, Cezanne created a scene where form was given priority and yet, while Van Goghs form was less definite and had few angles, the model and the frames within the picture by Cezanne are more symmetrical and suggest the initial entry of cubism into art forms. The incremental nature of Cezanne's approach was eloquently discussed by the critic Roger Fry (1989, 3): For him, as I understand his work, the ultimate synthesis of a design was never revealed in a flash; rather he approached it with infinite precautions..."

And thus emerged two artists of equal genius and yet, such different temperaments.



Rewald, J. Post-Impressionism. New York: Museum of Modem Art. ed. 1995a Paul Cezanne letters. New York: Da Capo Press.

Hefner, Brook Van Gogh's history chronicled in L.A. exhibit., University Wire, 01-20-1999.

Van Gogh, V. 1958. The complete letters of Vincent van Gogh. Vol.

3. London: Thames…… [read more]

Art History the Clouds Gleamed Term Paper

Term Paper  |  8 pages (2,571 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1+



The Voice now wanted to know more about the materials with which the artists worked, to get a better idea of the mundane aspects of art.

Leonardo," began the Voice, "you are in many ways more versatile a creator than your counterpart before you. You have composed sketches of objects and devices that will not be constructed for hundreds… [read more]

Art History - High Renaissance Term Paper

Term Paper  |  5 pages (1,389 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1+


The various influences that played an important role in the development of Raphael's artistic ability are evident. The round format is indicative of Florence, yet the picture within is different from Raphael's own Florentine Madonnas. The Virgin Mother's pose resembles a work of classic sculpture, with the robes of ancient Rome, and the landscape itself is seen as an idealized view of the Roman campagna. There is grandeur to The Alba Madonna, lending it a seriousness, the need for which could be interpreted as emanating from the focus on a slender reed cross that defines the work's intended meaning. Church doctrine holds that from birth Christ had an understanding of his fate. In The Alba Madonna, the Christ Child is shown accepting the cross of his future sacrifice (National Gallery of Art).

The artist's point-of-view can be seen in the tension that arises from the seriousness of the subject being addressed and in the poses of the figures, increased multifold by the contrast of the serene countryside and the simplicity and sweetness of facial expressions. The work is classified as High Renaissance Art given the characteristics of technique, symmetry and individual artistic expression.

Madonna with a Long Neck by Parmigianino is a work from the Mannerism period, as evident in the artist's exaggerated stylization of the Madonna's neck, long delicate fingers and the long leg of the angel in the foreground. The effect achieved is theatrical and formulaic indicating a move away from the natural themes in previous Renaissance periods. The abstract forms and unusual proportions lend the work an interesting, even elegant effect. It has been interpreted that the artist approached this work with a view to demonstrate that unorthodoxy could result in creating startling effects that can still communicate (The Artchive).

Three works, all on the Madonna, all from the same era and yet so different! The question is whether any comparison of the three is really justifiable at all. Taking the view that art is a form of expression intended to convey meaning, it can be suggested that all three of the works under consideration here are indeed extremely communicative. Art that does not express will leave the viewer cold and indifferent. That is certainly not the case here for all three works are evocative and hold the power to gain and hold attention.

The Madonna of the Rocks uses the tension of the darkness of the cavern to create mysteriousness, which is relevant to the significance of the meeting of the Christ Child and the infant saint John; and the unmistakable feeling of interior wisdom of the faces brings in more emotional impact, perhaps even signifying the path from darkness to light. Raphael, on the other hand, chooses to use stark simplicity to bring about seriousness, while Parmigianino's stylized technique succeeds in communicating a 'larger than life' feel to the event depicted.


Artists by Movement: Mannerism." Artcyclopedia Web site. URL: http://www.artcyclopedia.com/history/mannerism.html

Gombrich, E.H. "The Story of Art." Artchive Web site. URL:


Kren, Emil and… [read more]

Botticelli's Mythological Paintings Term Paper

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The aristocrats of the time favored the past classics and as such here we see a Greek influence in the nudity of the bodies. The male body was seen as a form of art and by showing the nude form reclined amidst the women and children the classical Greek preferences were portrayed. Then we see the cherub in the picture which resembles Cupid the child god of love so cherished by the Romans.

With these obvious elements of love depicted we can easily decipher the woman in the image as that of Venus and predict the male as Mars; three mythological characters, signifying rage and love. In mythological terms, it is said that the result of rage and love is harmony, and this is what is reflected in the painting because the child has a lovely smile on his face.

In this painting, Botticelli's style reflects Gothic art with a blend of the topics chosen from classical mythology. This style is effective as almost every detail of the strokes in the painting is highly revealing. An example of this is the swarm of wasps around Mars' head that indicate that victory is never a permanent thing. However, this style is such that it was considered to be outdated for the period within which Botticelli used it. This is why with the decline of the Medici family we saw a change in style for Botticelli who lost his patrons and thus saw his style losing flavor in court and beyond.

Conclusion: Botticelli's art in the painting Mars and Venus thus suggests a love and influence of the gothic art which was used to reveal the symbolic myths of the past in order to revive sentiment and passion in an era of changing society.


Cheney, Liana De Girolami Quattrocento Neoplatonism and Medici Humanism in Botticelli's Mythological Paintings University Press of America, 1985 www.windows.ucar.edu/tour/link=/mythology/WINDOWS_MAIN_FILE/TCC97_small.html&edu=high"… [read more]

Michelangelo Biography and Detailed Information Term Paper

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Bibliography Sources: 1+


The artist depicts the sublime act of creating Adam through a simple touch of the finger. A touch, yes, but not completely physical: God's index never touches Adam's, but let's us imagine God's whole power. Between God's index and Adam's finger, one can see the glitter of a superior will and of a superior power. Symbolically, God is surrounded by angels and by an elliptical mantle that signifies the initial 'cosmic Egg' from which everything emerged. One can notice that Adam himself forms an ellipse, but only an incomplete one: he needs God's soul-giving touch for him to complete himself as a being. For indeed, Adam is physically created: he has been made in God's image, as the similitude in the two bodies structure points out: both are muscular, strong, showing Michelangelo's genius in portraying human bodies and his profound anatomical studies. He is physically alive, but needs God's touch to perform himself as a human and be endowed with intellect and spirit. It is truly a timeless moment.

The picture is asymmetrical: God is extended to touch Adam, thus suggesting that he actually has the will to endow Adam with life. In this sense, God is pictured over the illusionary middle of the whole painting, while Adam was placed on the left end, in expectance. Two shapes dominate the painting and both of them are elliptical shapes. The first one is described by God's cloak and by his suite of angels, forming a perfect ellipse, while on the other side of the painting, Adam's ellipse is incomplete. Symbolically, this is so because he is not fully achieved.

Even if the painting is indeed 2- dimensional, the vault of the ceiling and the architectural impressions and trompe l'aeil that Michelangelo paints give indeed the likeliness of a 3- dimensional space. With the help of this illusion, Michelangelo is able to create a sense of perspective, even though the whole action occurs in the forefront of the painting. However, it does not end here: through the use of perspective (technique that had already begun to be used), the Earth and skies seem to be continuing somewhere in a further plan. This is probably meant to underline the importance of the moment and of the two foremost characters. These are the human anatomical ideal. As I have said before, Michelangelo carefully studied the human anatomy and used it to create models of physical human beauty. This is also the case in the Creation of Adam. Strong, masculine bodies, prototypes of ideal human proportions.

Michelangelo painted the Creation of Adam directly on the ceiling in a technique called fresco. This kind of technique was among the most difficult in the Renaissance as it contained a high degree of possible degradation at a later date. One can only mention here the example of the Holy Supper by Leonardo da Vinci in the church of Santa Maria delle Grazie in Milan that is nowadays being restored. Michelangelo himself had this problem when painting the Sistine… [read more]

Henri Matisse's Painting Woman Term Paper

Term Paper  |  4 pages (1,206 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1+


His Woman Before an Aquarium can also be seen as a play on shapes, in mockery of the Art Deco movement, which began to emit a plethora of circles and squares in their designs (Neret, 1999).

We shall now turn to the poem Woman Before an Aquarium by Patricia Hampl, which uses many of the same approaches that Matisse used in his painting towards the execution of the poem, for example, themes, colours, approaches, and styles.

The poem by Hampl uses the theme of Matisse's painting, a woman before an aquarium, and takes us on a journey to discover how and why the woman is sitting before the fish. Hampl uses poetic devices, such as repetition, similes, and metaphors, to make us feel we are in the place of this unknown woman, that we are feeling what she is feeling, waiting for what she is waiting for.

We feel the woman's emotions, through the skill with which the poem is written, and we begin to see the poem as a homage to the skill of Matisse; Hampl must have had sufficient respect for the work of Matisse to make a careful study of his approach and execution for this painting, to be able to emulate his style in her poetry.

This is one reason why poets do not often write poems based on works of art: it is a rather daunting task, to tread in the footsteps of the great, and to expect praise for doing so. It takes a particular confidence to be able to do this, and a particular talent to be able to carry it off successfully, as Hampl has done in her poem.

We began by looking at the reasons why poets may become inspired by works of art, and we argued that both poets and painters can be considered artists, and as such, that they can both be inspired by any source, be that nature, memories, feelings, or other paintings (painters are also inspired to recreate paintings, as poets are inspired to write by paintings).

We then saw that for another artist to recreate a work of art needs a great deal of confidence, and knowledge of the artists work, so that the original work can be done justice. In the case of Woman Before an Aquarium, one of Matisse's great works, this painting was handled with a great deal of care, as with all of his works, and is very well executed.

For Hampl to come to this work, and to decide to write about it took a great deal of confidence, and the process of researching and writing the poem was sufficiently in depth, as the end-product certainly does justice to the love and care and thought that went in to Matisse's painting.

Her style, the themes she uses, the tone of the poem, all of these create a similar atmosphere to that created by Matisse in his painting; I would say that Hampl's poem is one poem that actually increases appreciation of… [read more]

Art Philosophy Tragedy Term Paper

Term Paper  |  4 pages (1,467 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1+


The empirical properties of the physical sciences may be used to infer the empirical existence of consciousness. Mental properties cannot be identical to physical properties; however, psychology can be reduced to natural science in terms of causal efficacy. For Hume, impressions are those things that are experienced through the senses, while ideas are 'copies' of impressions.

Picasso takes his ideas… [read more]

Painting St. Jerome Term Paper

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Bibliography Sources: 0


Actually, the detail of the man is not quite as much as his surroundings, but he does not blend into the background. On the contrary, he is the central theme of the work, and without him it would have no reason for existence. The man and his translation work is the central theme of the painting. He is a religious man, who is doing something important, and this theme makes the rest of the details important and fascinating. The artist is expressing his religious beliefs in this work, and clearly, he finds the work of this man important, valid, and unique, as he includes all of these elements in the finished work to give added depth to his theme. Truly, this engraving is cool because of what it shows the viewer, and what goes unsaid in the background. It makes the viewer think, and that is one element of a truly cool and important work of art.

In conclusion, "St. Jerome in His Study" draws the viewer into the work, giving them a differing view every time they look at the piece. The great attention to detail is evident at first glance, but each succeeding view brings something new to light, and draws the viewer back for another look, and another, and another. This work has stood the test of time, and is still fascinating and wonderful, which makes it cool, but also makes it an enduring glance into the Northern…… [read more]

Paintings by David and Raoux Term Paper

Term Paper  |  2 pages (765 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1+


David had been a revolutionary, agitating for the sorts of removal of the aristocratic power structure that had first been thought about in Raoux' time. For David, humanism -- the concept of the supremacy and dignity of man -- had taken hold of the mass consciousness in general, and David's in particular.

In the David work, Eucharis presses her very clean profile against Telemachus' bare shoulder. While the lovers run away, moving through time and space in the Raoux painting, these lovers, although in a farewell setting, are still attached, and erotically so. While Raoux exposes a lot of bare skin in his work, it is does not tell a specific tale as the skin-to-skin caress does in the David work. And, too, David uses intense color in draping the bodies, bright red and blue. Raoux used a gentler palette, not infused with intensity and, arguably, desire.

In this way, Jacques-Louis David contrasts masculine rectitude with female emotion," writes Mary Vidal. (2000)

On the other hand, Raoux spreads the paint thinly, with abundant use of white to make the clothing seem light and transparent, to suggest movement as the lovers run through time and space. They are connected to each other only arm to arm, not entwined, as are Telemachus and Eucharis. David's heavy application of intense color and almost no use of white suggests that these lovers are grounded in each other, that there is a heavy and indissoluble connection from which neither can run away, despite their parting.

The lovers painted by Raoux are connected as much to others as to each other; one looks back, the other forward, but always surrounded by more of humanity.

The lovers painted by David are self-involved, a duo that has neither intellectual nor artistic need of others, complete in themselves.

Although both paintings might be said to be realistic in execution, each painting is perfectly representative of the intellectual atmosphere of its painter's own time.

Works Cited

Jean Raoux." Biography, retrieved 12 April 2004 at http://www.getty.edu/art/collections/bio/a197-1.html

Vidal, Mary. "David's Telemachus and Eucharis: Reflections on Love, Learning, and History."

The Art Bulletin, 1 December 2000.

The Enlightenment." Retrieved 12 April 2004 at http://www.wsu.edu:8080/~brians/hum_303/enlightenment.html… [read more]

Traditional African Art Term Paper

Term Paper  |  1 pages (334 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1+


This is the most common traditional African art form. Various materials are used for the masks, including wood, bronze, or feathers.

The Yoruba community for example was extremely artistic, producing wood, bronze, terra cotta and iron sculptures, masks and other tribal ornaments. Masks were used for the purpose of entertaining senior women and honoring deities associated with witchcraft.

The art of the Dan people was very much focused on masks, and these were used in various aspects of life. Masks were for example used both for everyday purposes such as judging cases and entertaining, and for spiritual occasions. The style of the masks would then be suited to the occasion and to the nature of the persons wearing them.


Rebirth. "African Mask History." 2000. http://www.rebirth.co.za/African_mask_history_and_meaning.htm

Traditional African Art." 2004. http://www.geocities.com/Paris/Metro/5252/african.htm… [read more]

Museum Methods Term Paper

Term Paper  |  17 pages (5,430 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1+


Although I agree with the basic structure of this definition, I would prefer more emphasis on the level of required professional standards necessary to designate an institution as a museum. Many non-profit institutions are established to enrich our society including, schools, libraries and community social and cultural organizations. Many of these institutions are essential in the preservation of values and… [read more]

Art Exhibition Essay

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Art Exhibition

One of the more often repeated sayings is that the United States is a melting pot of cultures. This is nowhere as true as it is when thinking about the artistic experience since the late 18th century forward. Celebrating this immigrant experience, the Smithsonian Institution presents an exhibit entitled, Our America: The Latino Presence in American Art. The exhibit is located in Washington, D.C., and lasts from October 25, 2013 to March 2, 2014. The exhibition includes 92 works in all media from 72 artists in various styles and genres. The overall message of the exhibition is to celebrate Latino culture through the local experience about what it means to be a Latino in modern-America; the cultural and personal heritage expressed though art as a community. One of the more interesting aspects of the exhibit was not only the diversity of medium, but the vast differences in style and interpretation among the Latino community. For instance, the offerings include artists from the Mexican, Cuban, Puerto Rican, as well as numerous other Central and South American immigrant heritages. Each of these artists seems also to embody the spirit of their particularly unique -- yet similar -- mix of Latinism and Americanism. The exhibit also includes film, music, artistic/educational programs, as well as concerts, panels and panel discussions. This makes the exhibition more well-rounded and multi-dimensional (Smithsonian, 2013).

My visit to the exhibition was done with a good friend, who is a humanities major and was able to make several inferences about many of the works tie together for me. In addition, my friend is fairly fluent in Spanish, and we not only understood more from other Spanish-speaking attendees, the mood was jovial when I became a student of Spanish 101.Despite the serious nature of many of the works, the nearly perfect Fall day was a mix of both an artistic buzz and educational brain ache. There is no way that one can really experience this "festival" in one day, and I know that several of the pieces were missed. But this is a positive in that it invites more than a one-time experience. Reflecting back, I think it might be interesting to split the visits into genres, then try to attend the round tables, culture walks, or extra experiences that focus on a particular theme or medium. However, I also realized after viewing only a few pieces that one important way to enhance the experience more, or even take on after the first visit, is to learn more about Hispanic history and culture for at least the 20th century on. So much of the artwork has not only cultural underpinnings, but represents or was inspired by actual historical events. Understanding the historical basis helps define the cultural basis, and thus one is able to glean more from the artistic representation. To me, this is particularly true when one thinks about the Civil Rights Movement, and to understand that the Latino contingent was crucial to many of the changes and… [read more]

Pieter Jansz. Saenredam Research Paper

Research Paper  |  10 pages (2,727 words)
Style: Chicago  |  Bibliography Sources: 12


Pieter Jansz. Saenredam was a Dutch painter most commonly known for his involvement in producing paintings of church interiors during the seventeenth century. There is much controversy with regard to Saenredam's interest in religion, considering how his paintings tend to portray elements that have little to nothing to do with the original elements present in buildings he painted. In addition… [read more]

Renaissance Art Ghirlandaio's "Old Man Research Paper

Research Paper  |  2 pages (579 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1


The use of shade helps develop the sense that there is perspective in the painting and that objects that are closer or farther away appear so. There is also a window by which the old man and child are sitting in which appears an outdoor scene. The window shows two hills, one clearly behind the other and a road which winds through the countryside, becoming ever larger the closer it gets. The small scene shown through the window is a perfect example of how the artists of the Renaissance used perspective to create a realistic portrayal of the world around them.

Finally, like many Renaissance artworks Ghirlandaio's "Old Man with his Grandson" is strictly secular in its subject, without any religious influence. The painting is simply an old man and his grandson; no angels, halos, demons, or any religious icons or symbolism. The work of art maintains a humanist basis, showing a purely human interaction to which any person could relate.

Ghirlandaio's "Old Man with his Grandson" demonstrates a combination of Renaissance values and ideals; specifically perspective, reality, and secularism. Artists of the Renaissance sought to capture reality in their paintings, in effect they tried to make their work appear as if it were a photograph; something very difficult to accomplish with paint. However, Ghirlandaio's use of perspective and shadow allowed for a realism to come through so that the painting portrays a realistic scene of two realistic people. It also demonstrates the transformation from purely religious subjects to a more Humanist view of art, one where human interaction takes center place.


Ghirlandaio, Domenico. (1490). Old Man with his Grandson [Painting]. Retrieved from http://www.wga.hu/frames-e.html?/html/g / ghirland/domenico/7panel/08oldman.html… [read more]

Love Letter Term Paper

Term Paper  |  5 pages (1,624 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1+


The delicacy and playfulness of Rococo designs is often seen as a reaction to the excesses of Louis XIV's regime" (du.ac.in). Thus, the frivolity and the sense of fleeting that is present throughout the painting is something which is representative of the Rococo period in general.

Ultimately, the painting is very inviting and it encourages one to be a part of the space that it occupies. It makes one almost feel mildly voyeuristic as if one is trying to get a glimpse at the love letter presented. The painting is both quiet and loud and involves the senses in a sensual manner, evoking a strong amount of curiosity. Its warmth makes one enjoy being in its presence. It provides pleasure and makes one feel uncomfortable. My overall relationship to the painting is one of intrigue and mild excitement.

The painting has definitely showed me how the act of looking needs to be treated in a more proactive manner and that one must not regard works of art in a lazy fashion. It has shown me how the act of making art is precise, and how so many different elements work together to make a piece of art successful. Art is differentiated from any other type of object in the beauty (though sometimes not traditional beauty) and deeper meaning that art conveys. Art is able to point to the elusive and the eternal: these are the elements of life that few things can really touch upon with great success. Art can also take on a variety of meanings and be able to shift the perspective of many, allowing it in many ways to be ever transforming.


Artble.com. (2013). Jean-Honore Fragonard. Retrieved from Artble.com: http://www.artble.com/artists/jean-honore_fragonard#style_and_technique

Du.ac.in. (2013). Rococo. Retrieved from Du.ac.in: http://www.du.ac.in/fileadmin/DU/Academics/course_material/euroart/hyperlinks%202/Rococo%20features.htm… [read more]

Goya's the Forge Essay

Essay  |  4 pages (1,370 words)
Bibliography Sources: 0


The eye gravitates toward their centrality, and the complicated mix of angles that Goya has used to arrange these bright spots. This leaves the third man, whose position is complicated, and whose grey hair indicates a greater age than the other two: from the angle at which he bends, and from the glimpse of his left hand, it appears that he is operating a bellows. But his presence definitely makes the viewer think that we have three generations of men represented here: youth, adult, and old man.

The most astonishing thing about Goya's painterly technique here, though, is its fundamental unrealism. The facial features are discernible but they are not painted with a clarity or a particular attention to photographic realism: the young man's face is almost cartoonish, the old man's face is blurred and grey. The one spot of bright vivid color in the painting -- the glowing orange patch atop the anvil -- is almost an abstraction: we can hardly see what item these men are working on, we merely note its glaring bright color in the overall gloom of the canvas. Likewise Goya's brushwork frequently seems to be done with a palette knife, or at least geared to give a slightly improvised and blurred effect: the white lines on the left upper thigh of the blacksmith appear applied with a knife, as do the white highlights on the young man's upper right shoulder. The face of the old man seems to have been delineated entirely with a palette knife: the lines that indicate his beard and mouth seem too broad and rough for mere brushstrokes. It is astonishing to see, in a painting that would best be described as a form of social realism, that much of the actual painting seems more to anticipate Impressionism.

But this is arguably Goya's purpose here. The brushwork is clearly meant to capture the physical and emotive force of these figures: the heat and smoke of a blacksmith's shop, the strong physical motion of hammering on an anvil, are all things that in real life would obscure and blur our actual vision. Goya is capturing what things look like to a viewer in an actual smithy, by backing away from straightforward realism. Yet I noted at the outset that Goya's purpose here is arguably political. This derives from the choice of topic -- ordinary working men engaged in an activity that also has a history in mythological painting, usually in depictions of the god Vulcan forging the armor of Aeneas or the armor of Achilles, depending whether the painter is illustrating a scene from Vergil or Homer. Vulcan is, of course, the god of craftsmen -- he would be the patron of these very human blacksmiths. But Goya himself is fundamentally a craftsman as well: he indicates more of an identification with these strong central figures -- with their sense of three generations of men standing in allegorically for all working men everywhere, cooperating on one task -- than he does… [read more]

Diller Scofidio + Renfro: MOMA Expansion Research Paper

Research Paper  |  5 pages (1,678 words)
Style: MLA  |  Bibliography Sources: 13


Not all will fit. But the building enshrines the desire to comprehend as an American freedom" (Muschamp 1). The private art of folk art is being crowded out by more conventional images of modern art in some eyes: which is highly ironic, given the extent to which Picasso, Miro, and so many of the artists preserved within the walls of the current MoMA were considered outsiders long ago.

Yet AFAM was originally conceptualized as a modernist project as well to some degree and a merging of folk art and modernism in a way that was not ultimately successful. A positive review in the New York Times of AFAM noted: "The architects have acknowledged that the form created by the triangle atop the window is an etherealized human hand. The image establishes the building in relationship to the craft tradition and also to the continuity of modernism as epitomized by the French architect Le Corbusier" (Muschamp 1). The public was not interested and although critics praised the appearance of the encasement, the public seemed to find the contents unexciting, in contrast to the offerings of MoMA. "The lack of sex appeal of Folk Art, cloistered behind what many found to be an uninviting facade" is what ultimately led it to being subsumed into MoMA (Scott 1).

Museums are meant to serve the public and the art which is shown in the new structure seems to serve the public's needs more than the defunct folk museum. Sometimes something must be lost for much to be gained: still, the dominant nature of a few major museums which eclipse all others is troubling, as is the demolishment of a work which was considered to have aesthetic value by many architects, even if it was not appreciated while it stood.

Works Cited

"Building for the future: A work in progress." MoMA. 7 Apr 2014.


Davidson, J. "MoMA reveals its expansion plans." Culture Vulture. 14 Jan 2014.

7 Apr 2014.http://www.vulture.com/2014/01/moma-expansion-plans-american-folk-art-museum.html

Muschamp, Herbert. "Fireside intimacy for folk museum." The New York Times. 14 Dec 2001.

7 Apr 2014. http://www.nytimes.com/2001/12/14/arts/architecture-review-fireside-intimacy-for-folk-art-museum. 7 Apr 2014.

Pogrebin, Robin. "12-year-old building at MoMA doomed." The New York Times. 10 Apr 2013.

7 Apr 2014. http://www.nytimes.com/2013/04/11/arts/design/moma-to-raze-ex-american-folk-art-museum-building.html?_r=1&

Scott, Peter. "Tear down on 53rd street." The Brooklyn Rail. 4 Mar 2014.…… [read more]

Baroque Art an Examination Essay

Essay  |  3 pages (983 words)
Bibliography Sources: 3


However, the composition and subject matter are completely different in Regnier's painting vs. that of Sellaio. In Regnier's painting, the horizontal line is more important than the vertical, whereas the reverse is true in Sellaio's. In Sellaio's, the canvas is longer than it is wide; and it is the other way around for Regnier. Regnier depicts his figures along the horizontal plane, with St. Sebastian's reclining body the central motif. Moreover, Regnier includes nothing in the background of the painting. The black background is stark, forcing the viewer's eye to rest on the triangulation created by the holy women and the saint. Sellaio, on the other hand, incorporates a naturalistic background behind the subjects, similar to what DaVinci would later do in "La Gioconda." Whereas Sellaio uses no chiaroscuro, thus imparting a rather flat illumination, Regnier's painting is as much a painting of light as it is a painting of human figures. Tenebrism allows the figures of the two women and St. Sebastian to leap from the canvas.

Whereas Regnier's tenebrism permits only a judicious use of color, with the red folds of the younger woman's clothing the main counterpoint to the otherwise black and white domains, Sellaio includes a variety of pastel and earth shades throughout the composition. Regnier's painting is shadowy, and the space occupied by the central figures is large. On the other hand, Sellaio's painting has no shadows, and the canvas is filled entirely with light-filled objects. Whereas the only straight lines in Regnier's painting are formed by the arrows, Sellaio relies heavily on the use of straight lines in his composition, such as the wall behind Mary and the cross formed by her elongated body and the invisible cross line with John the Baptist. Historical context influences the different style, composition, mood, tone, and symbolism of these two Renaissance paintings. Most notably, Sellaio paints pre-Reformation, and Regnier paints post-Reformation. The arrows in the Regnier composition, which are the only straight lines on the canvas, represent both the injuries done to St. Sebastian as well as the method by which the women deliver his salve. Thus, the Reformation is both an injury to the Church and also a means by which to make the Church stronger.

The differences between these two Renaissance compositions bely their similar symbolism. Both stress the centrality of Christian imagery and symbolism in Renaissance art. A cross shape is evident in the linear compositions of both paintings, even though one is rendered horizontally and the other vertically. Themes of redemption and rebirth are also present in the stories of St. Sebastian and likewise in the story of Christ with John the Baptist.

Works Cited

Castelvecchi, Davide. "Renaissance Painting Restoration Leads to Unusual Collaboration." Stanford Report. July 21, 2004. Retrieved online: http://news.stanford.edu/news/2004/july21/jacopo-721.html

Regnier, Nicolas. "St. Sebastian Attended by Holy Women," 1615-1626.

Sellaio, Jacopo del. "Virgin and Child with St. John the Baptist." Painting. 1480-85… [read more]

Sistine Chapel Research Paper

Research Paper  |  5 pages (1,760 words)
Bibliography Sources: 7


Sistine Chapel

In the year 1506, Pope Julius the Second approached Michelangelo Buonarroti and commissioned him to paint the Pope's private chapel, the Sistine Chapel. Although Michelangelo was not much interested in this assignment, he reluctantly gave in. From 1508 through 1512, he worked on 65-foot scaffolding and painted what is now considered the greatest work of art in the… [read more]

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