Contextual Analysis 

Museum Essay

In this chapter, we have examined portrayals of women from different cultures and eras.

Visit a local MUSEUM of FINE ART (not a gallery, not a novelty museum). If you live in DFW, there are many museums to choose from – The Dallas Museum of Art, The Nasher, The Crow, The Kimbell, and The Fort Worth Modern museum.

Find an artwork in which a woman/ women are represented as the focal point.

*Image cannot be from any chapter in the textbook. 

*Any kind of art from any time period or culture is eligible.

  1. Considering the elements and principles of art discussed in this course, perform a visual analysis of your selected artwork. How does the artist represent the woman in his/her art-work?
  1. Describe the artwork in a Formal Analysis. Discuss At least 6 of the Elements and Principles of Art in depth.
  2. Give a Stylistic Analysis as it relates to the style(s) of artwork from the time period in which it was created (see Chapter 1.10 Content and Analysis in the text, p. 180).  You are required to research and include in-paper citations.
  1. Next, write a Contextual Analysis to give the reader a sense of the time/culture your selected artwork reflects. Various aspects of context can be considered; for example, religious, historical, gender critique and biographical analyses are all types of contextual analysis (see Chapter 1.10 Content and Analysis in the text, p. 185). Requiresresearch and in-paper citations. Do not use Wikipedia as a source.
  2. Write a conclusion for your paper. Did you enjoy the artwork visually? Intellectually? Have your initial assumptions about it changed through your research? Do you agree or disagree with the information you included in Paragraph IV or do you have an entirely different view of the work?

Style Guidelines for Writing the Paper:

  • Length           3-page minimum, each page 30 lines
  • Font Size       12 point- Arial
  • Spacing: 1.5
  • If you choose the artwork from the internet or other sources, your grade will drop 20 points
  • Your grade go down if your essay is short (1point for each line)
  • You will lose 10 points for each day late.
  • A minimum of three MLA citations must appear in the body of your paper. 3 points
  • Create a bibliography at the end of the paper (does not count towards the three page minimum). 3 points
  • The first page: Use a header for your name, title of paper, and course name/number. You Must represent an image of artwork and an image of you next to the artwork  ( two images). Beneath images write the artwork information: artist name, title, date, medium, size, location. 5 points

Your final paper should have the following structure:

Paragraph I: Introduction

In this paragraph, tell the reader what artwork you have selected and generally outline your purpose for writing this paper. Tell the reader what you will be discussing in the paper. 7 points

Paragraph II: Formal and Stylistic Analyses of selected image. 48 points

Paragraph III: Contextual Analysis of selected image. (research required) 24 points

Paragraph V: Conclusion 10 points

Conclude the paper by offering your personal insight. Did you enjoy the artwork visually? Intellectually? Have your initial assumptions about it changed through your research? Do you agree or disagree with the information you included in Paragraph III or do you have an entirely different view of the work?



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