Select a work of art from the text (it may be architecture, a sculpture, or painting) and:
1) First, spend time looking thoroughly at this work of art and write an analysis of it. Make sure to explain what it is (i.e. is it a sculpture or painting), identify the subject matter, and explain the methods that the artist has used. To the extent possible, how is the artist using shape, color, line, or texture? Or, how is the piece balanced? How does the artist attempt to convey emotion or feeling?
2) Second, find out a little about the artist and the historical period he/she represents. There may be more or less in the text depending on the artist that you find. Outside research will help you here. Briefly summarize your findings and also try to use this material to answer: what do you think was the purpose for making this piece? What do you think the artist was trying to say?
3) Find another work that is similar in some way. For example, two architectural pieces, two statues, two still-life’s, portraits, landscapes, or works on a similar theme, like mother and child, the crucifixion, etc. Explain how they are the same, then compare and contrast the second piece to your first selection. Especially think in terms of the techniques, historical time periods, and motivation for the pieces. How are they similar? In what ways are they different? Be specific.
4) In your conclusion, respond to these works of art critically and personally. Do you think they are equally successful as works of art? Why? How do they make you feel? Do you like them? Why or why not?
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