You will browse through at least three different departments, and visit at least 5 of the required core objects that will be on the final. These include but are not limited to The Gubbio Studiolo, the Chinese Garden (the Astor court), the Mihrab from Isfahan, the Damascus Room, the Triumph of Fame of the Medici family, Bruegel’s Harvestors, Raphael’s Madonna and Child, Rembrandt’s Aristotle with a Bust of Homer, Vermeer’s Young Woman with a Water Pitcher, the Dogon Seated Couple, the Benin Queen Mother Pendant Mask, and the Sagredo Palace bedroom. Please make a note of those that you see and jot down your impressions.
You will also choose one artwork from the periods we will have studied that you did not already discuss in a paper and which is NOT a core object/ This paper is much like the first one. You should pay attention to the comments I gave you for your first paper and make sure to edit accordingly.
Spend a generous amount of time looking at your object and reading the museum description and any associated Metmuseum Heilbrunn Timeline essays. Choose an artwork that both interests you and addresses one of the conceptual issues taken up by the readings we have read this semester. You may want, for example, to explore the agency of art, contemplative space or representation of political power. To explore this theme, you will do further research on JSTOR or googlebooks so as to understand more fully the way that your object expresses the theme that you are interested in. You must use at least 3 originally text sources (like JSTOR or Google Books – not web sources) and 2 Metropolitan museum timeline sources. Do not turn to just any old web source. THESE WILL NOT COUNT TOWARDS THE FIVE. If you have questions about which sources are acceptable, please email me.
A persuasive essay will be well-written, carefully organized and edited, and contain the following components:
- An introduction that clearly identifies the title, date, size and materials of the artwork. You should also provide some general historical information. For instance, who or what does the artwork depict? Have you learned anything about its original location and purpose? Your introduction should end with a statement of the argument you are making: your thesis. This should be directly about your artwork not about a general
- The bulk of your paper should be devoted to a thorough formal analysis that proves how the appearance of the artwork addresses the chosen issue. Describe the artwork in detail, progressing from its general appearance to more specific features. Consider a variety of issues, including technique, composition, volume, line, texture, degrees of realism or idealization, etc as evidence for the argument you are making. For example, you may have chosen a religious work that shows humility in the face of temptation. Your research on that religion and on the iconography of “humility” within that religion will firm up your observations.
- In conclusion, summarize how your Metropolitan artwork is representative of the culture that created it and their attitude toward your theme. In other words, do the artworks conform to the general appearance of your periods? Or do they deviate from those standards?
- Include properly formatted footnotes and bibliography using the Chicago Style. Remember: at least 3 print (not web) sources as well as at least 2 Metropolitan essays.
Your completed essay should be roughly 5 pages long, typed and double-spaced, and include an image of the artwork on a cover page (that does not count as one of the 5 pages.)