This is to build your visual ability to observe, describe, and interpret the potential meaning of your chosen art object.
You should rely on your analysis and explanation of specific elements* in the object to serve as evidence supporting your ideas.
(1) Visual analysis is a method of understanding art that focuses on an artwork’s visual elements, such as color, line, composition, texture, material, and scale.
(2) Understand how the formal properties of an artwork communicate ideas, content, or meaning.
(3) Visual analysis is often used as a starting point for art-historical writing. It is also a critical part of visual literacy, a skill that helps people read and critically interpret images, whether in a museum, on social media, in entertainment, advertising, or the news.
(4) As citizens of the 21st century, we are constantly confronted with visual media. Practicing visual analysis sharpens critical judgment skills and helps people seek out answers instead of passively receiving information. This is especially important when exposing hidden ideologies that may motivate seemingly neutral images.
– find the object (artifact, art, edifice, architecture, ritual performance).
● 2 double-spaced pages typed in 12 pt font with double space
● Be sure to include the following information to identify the object (caption) + image
○ Artist name (if there is any) or sponsor
○ Title of object and location (original location/ current collection)
○ Date of production
○ Media / Dimension
○ Artistic/Stylistic Movement or Group
● Chicago Manual of Styles if you use any references
Review this Grading Rubric to help you assess the quality of your work.
A formal analysis differs from a written description in that it examines how the artist’s use of an object’s formal qualities (line, shape, spatial treatment, composition, media and technique, etc.) helps the viewer figure out what’s going on in the work of art.
Remember that you are not simply describing the work; rather, you are using your descriptions of the work to reinforce your thesis/assertive conclusion.