The text of the paper should be  approximately 3-4 pages long (double-spaced) with bibliography and footnotes.  Included images are in addition to the 3-4 pages of text.


Select a work of art from a museum in your area (or an architectural structure in your  area). Basically, this is an assignment to have you look at original works of art and use  the skills acquired in class to analyze the work in its historical and cultural context.


Christina Maranci’s “A Survival Guide for Art History Students” is recommended (but not  required) for this assignment.


Here are some considerations as you prepare to write this paper:


1. Describe and discuss the original work of art


2. Analyze the subject of the work of art. If you are writing about a building,


describe the purpose of the building. Please describe the subject as you


understand it. You are encouraged to use information from wall labels, but


secondary research is NOT expected.


3. Analyze the visual elements and the design of the work of art (or building),


describing how these relate to the properties of the artistic medium; i.e., use of


line in a painting, the use of shape in a work of sculpture. If you are writing


about a building, identify the issues of space and human activity as characteristic


to architecture.


4. Discuss how the visual elements, design and medium contribute to, or enhance,


the subject of the work. If you are writing about a building, discuss the impact of


the design and materials of the building upon the activities that take place within




5. Discuss how the site where the work of art is exhibited (or the location of the


building) influences your experience. For example, if the work is in a museum


gallery, what is the impact of the size of the gallery, the adjacent works of art,


the labels, the height where the work is hung, your understanding of the


purpose and reputation of the museum, where the museum is located, etc. If


the work is a building, how does the changing light of day/season affect your


experience of the interior spaces/exterior forms of the building? How does the


surrounding landscape affect your experience of the building? Etc.


Remember, you are not expected to do outside research on the work of art (although


you can, if you’d like and if it helps your understanding). The expectation is that you will


use the knowledge and skills acquired from this class to analyze the work of art and


place it within its historical and cultural context.



Please let me know if you have any questions.