Art Criticism

Google the artist you just read about in your chosen Beth Wilson article. Begin to get to know her or his artwork by looking at images, and reading information that you find. Spend about 30 minutes gathering information about the artist. Be sure to look closely at the images of the artist’s work.

Use Wilson’s writing to help you think about what kind of communication with the audience your artist is setting up: implicit, explicit, obscured, or some combination of the three.

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Create an Artist Response blog entry titled: AR3Feb8_ArtistName (ex. AR3Sept14_Kiefer)

Choose 2 or 3 interesting images of work by the artist you found online; post the images to your AR3 blog. In a caption for each image (or beside it):
Provide the URL each image came from
Provide information about the artwork if you can find it, including the title, when it was made (year), what it is made of, and its size. You may not be able to find all that, but it should be near the images online or in the writing you find.

Choose ONE image to write about:
Only write about one image. This is important.
Carefully examine the work and make notes to answer the following (in any form that works for you by hand, in a Word doc, etc.) THESE NOTES WILL NOT BE POSTED ON AR3. These notes are for you to help with AR3.
What do you see? Try to notice as much as you can, as many details, time of day or weather. Be very literal here, and try to notice as much as possible. What you literally see are the explicit aspects of the work.
What is the work made of? How does the medium contribute something to the way it looks?
What really stands out in the work? What has the artist done so that you notice that/those things?
What does the image make you think of, or remind you of? Is it referencing some kind of cultural phenomenon, historic event/period, or other bits of extrinsic (external) information? Why might that matter? Does it seem to be a metaphor for something else? These things the work points to are the implicit meanings that you bring to the work through your experience and cultural knowledge. Is there anything about the way the work was made that makes the work seem to be one thing, but in actuality exists as something else? These are obscured meanings; they are not necessarily present in all works of art, but think hard, and draw on the reading you’ve done to puzzle this out.
Choose between 5 and 8 “lively” words to describe the piece. Go to a thesaurus and find some good words that mean close to the same things.
THEN: Using your notes and the one chosen image:

Write your Artist Response and answer the following (no more than 350 words):
An explanation or exploration of what you think the work is about (your interpretation) and reasons for that interpretation: Reasons should refer back to the image and provide a good description that includes subject matter, medium and formal qualities (iii above)
Be sure to explain meanings that are implicit, explicit, obscured, or a combination of the artwork.
Use the lively words you identified.

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