ARTS 104 Study Guides
Instructor: Jessica Walton
Chapter One Study Guide
1) How does your book attempt to define art? What is your definition of art?
2) Has the concept of art throughout time remained static or is it constantly
evolving from time to time and place to place? Give some artistic examples
from Chapter 1 to back up your ideas on this.
3) What is artistic media? What are some examples of artistic media used in the
visual examples in Chapter 1?
4) How could Marcel Duchamp’s The Fountain (figure 1.4) be considered a
work of art?
5) What is aesthetics?
6) How is Polykleitos’ Doryphoros sculpture(figure 1.6) an example of idealism
for the ancient Greeks?
7) How do art historians, art critics, etc. determine aesthetic quality?
8) Compare and contrast the work of Bouguereau and Vincent Van Gogh? How
is the example of Van Gogh and Bougeureau a good example of how cultural
aesthetics and value can change over time?
9) How does your book attempt to define Fine Art, Kitsch, and Crafts? Give
several examples of each. What do you thing about these distinctions?
Chapter 2 Study guide
1) What is the composition of a work of art?
2) What are the Elements of Art (sometimes called the formal or visual
elements of art)?
a. Line
i. What are some different examples of the use of line described
in your text and how can the differences in line change a work
of art?
ii. What is a contour line drawing?
iii. What is an implied line?
b. Color
i. What is the difference between the additive and subtractive
color systems?
ii. What is the color wheel?
iii. What are primary, secondary, and tertiary colors?
iv. What is a complementary color?
v. What is a value scale?
c. Shape and Mass
i. What is positive versus negative space?
ii. What are shape, depth, and mass?
iii. What is the difference between geometric and organic shapes?
d. Space
i. How does overlapping, diminishing size, and vertical
placement give the illusion of depth in a picture?
ii. What is the foreground?
iii. Filippo Brunelleschi developed a mathematical system called
Linear Perspective in the 15th century (the Renaissance period)
in Italy. Describe this system. What is the difference between
one-point, two-point, and three-point perspective?
iv. What is aerial or atmospheric perspective?
e. Texture
i. What is visual texture? What is tactile texture?
f. Motion and Time
i. What is kinetic sculpture?
ii. Can you think of some other examples of art that use time and
3) What are the Principles of Design/Composition?
a. Balance
i. What are symmetrical balance, asymmetrical balance, and
radial balance?
ii. Can you find an example of a work of art in your text that you
feel is unbalanced?
b. Contrast
i. What is contrast? What are some examples of this described in
your text?
c. Rhythm
i. How is the term rhythm used when describing visual medium?
d. Unity and Variety
i. How is this principle sometimes used by artists to unify a work
of art but also avoid dullness?
e. Scale and Proportion
i. What is scale? What are some examples of how scale is
purposefully used by artists for varying reasons mentioned in
your text?
ii. What is proportion?
iii. What is canon of proportion? What is hierarchical scale?
Chapter 3 Study Guide
1) What is the difference between personal style and cultural style?
2) What is naturalism? What is the difference between Naturalism and Tromp
3) What is idealism?
4) What is stylization?
5) What is the difference between representational (objective), abstract, and
nonrepresentational (nonobjective).
6) Describe the styles of Abstract Expressionism, color field painting, and
7) How does the example of the Palette of Narmer and the Stele of Akhenaten
and Nefertiti portray how a cultural style can change from period to period?
8) How do Regional styles and personal styles contribute to the complexities of
art history. What are some examples of this described in your text?
Chapter 4 Study Guide
1) What are artistic media?
2) What are some examples of drawing media?
3) How does Michelangelo’s Nude (pg. 47) convey a sense of threedimensionality on a flat surface?
4) What are the two main components of paint? Describe the different examples
of painting media described in your text. What component changes in each
example of painting media?
5) What is mixed-media?
6) What is a print? What is an edition? How is the medium of printmaking so
different form the different artistic media discussed so far in this chapter?
7) What is collage?
8) What is an aperture? What is a camera obscura?
9) When was the earliest “photograph”, or first recorded example of an image
preserved on a surface?
10) What is a daguerreotype? Why does this early photographic process make
portraiture difficult?
11) How can “documentary” photography be misleading?
12) Your book uses two examples of a photograph of a barn (pg. 69) to describe
how a photograph of the same subject can be neutral or expressive? Do you
feel one of these images in more artistic/effective than the other? Why?
13)What were some of the earliest examples of cinema? When did these occur?
14)What are some examples of digital media?
Chapter 5 Study Guide
1) What is the difference between additive and subtractive media? What is
carving? Is this technique additive or subtractive?
2) What is freestanding sculpture?
3) What is casting? What is the lost wax casting method?
4) What is pottery? What is a ceramicist?
5) What is fiber art?
6) What is a mosaic?
7) What is kinetic sculpture?
8) What is an assemblage?
9) What is an earthwork? What motivated artists of the late 60’s to create these
earthworks or land art? How are these works site-specific?
10)What is installation art?
11)What is conceptual art? What are some examples of this described in your
12)What is performance art? How is this different from theater, ballet, or opera?
13)What are some of the earliest examples of architecture mentioned in this
14)This chapter gives you a brief description of some major early periods in
Western architecture, from ancient Greece, to Roman, to Romanesque, to
Gothic. What are some of the basic innovations, characteristics of each?
15) When were the earliest “skyscrapers”? What architectural engineering
techniques allowed these to be built?
16) What is green architecture?
Chapter 6 Study Guide
1) Do you feel that each piece of art has any one true meaning? Why or why not?
2) What is formalism? What does it mean to give a formalist analysis of a work
of art?
3) Use formalism to compare and contrast the Kouros sculpture (figure 6.1),
Doryphoros (figure 1.6), Les Desmoiselles d’Avignon (figure 6.2) and
Alchemy (figure 6.3).
4) What is a symbol in art? What is iconography? What are some examples of
the iconography found in the Merode Altarpiece (figure 6.4)?
5) Can you think of examples of iconography found in today’s art?
6) What is a social or cultural analysis of a work of art?
7) What is a biographical analysis of a work of art?
8) Who is Sigmund Freud? What are the id, ego, and superego? How did the
work of Freud influence the art of the Surrealists?
9) What is a psychoanalytic interpretation of a work of art?
10) Who was Carl Jung? How did his thinking influence the work of Jackson
11) What is a feminist analysis of a work of art?
12) Why does Linda Nochlin believe that women artists have been almost totally
absent from art history until quite recently? Do you agree with her?
13) What is meant by the term “primitive”? Early 20th century artists were very
influenced by the work of other cultures they viewed as “primitive”. This is
often called primitivism. How do you feel about artists such as Picasso and
Gauguin idealizing the “primitive” as well as appropriating imagery from
other “primitive” cultures for their own purposes?
14) Who is Karl Marx? What is a Marxist analysis of a work of art?
15)Do you feel that any one of these ways of analyzing a work of art is more
important to consider than the others or do they all contribute equally to an
understanding of a work of art?