1) Read Chapter 1 and pages 19-20 from the book "Prebles' ARTFORMS: An Introduction to the Visual Arts".
Chapter 1 is entitled "The Nature of Art and Creativity" and discusses what Art is, why people feel the need to create Art, how people use Art, how Art enhances society, how artists think, the different kinds of artists and the different ways artists communicate what they want to express. This chapter will give you some background and orient you to the visual arts. Additionally, it will introduce you to some terms to help you better express things you might already know and some you may not have thought about before.
Pages 19-20 from Chapter 2 ("Visual Communication") discusses the concept of "Looking and Seeing" which will help you become more aware and understand the different ways we see things. (Pages 21-57 from Chapter 2 should not be addressed in your Museum Paper).
2) Go to a major art museum. After reading this assignment and the assigned textbook pages, go to one of the following major art museums:
A. The Dallas Museum of Art ( www.dallasmuseumofart.org )
B. The Kimbell Art Museum ( www.kimbellart.org )
C. The Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth ( www.themodern.org) ]
3) Write a paper about your museum visit and the assigned reading.
Write about your experience. I definitely do not want a research paper. Instead, I want you to incorporate the assigned reading into your paper and put your own ideas and impressions into words (conceptualize). Your paper should reference which museum you visited.
Your paper should cover the following:
a) The Art. Tell me about a number of specific art pieces you saw. If you attended the museum's major featured exhibit, you may definitely include in your paper your reflections about that exhibit but you must also discuss art from other areas of the museum. I want you to be exposed to a variety of art so it's important that you make sure to see and discuss art created by different artists, made in different media and produced during different time periods.
b) The Assigned Reading. Tell me specifically about how the assigned reading helped you to better understand or influenced how you saw the art at the museum. Discuss the art pieces you saw as examples of the concepts or ideas set forth in the assigned reading from the text. (Hint: Be sure to use a number of the chapter sub-headings in your paper).
What I don't want:
Please don't spend time discussing when the museum is open or what objects can or can not be brought into the building or where patrons may park, etc. Just assume for this paper that I already know the basics about the museum. I want to hear your reactions to the museum and the art and not just a long list of everything you saw section by section.
Please don't tell me how a featured artist is untalented or that his/her art is not worthy of display. Just remember that this is an art appreciation course so do your best to try to appreciate the art you see even if you don't understand or like some of it. Assume for purposes of this assignment that each piece at the museum has some validity.
No "generic happy talk" please. I'm glad if you had a positive experience at the museum and if the art impressed or inspired you. Just skip all the superlatives for this paper and instead talk about the ideas I mentioned above.
This paper is not designed to be a research paper and I do not want you to use any outside research sources. But, if you can't get around quoting something from the museum, by all means cite the source.
What I do want:
I want to hear your own ideas and reflections about the museum, the art and the concepts addressed in the assigned reading. If someone else read your paper, I would hope it would inform them about the subject matter and might even give them some insight if they've never been to an art museum before.