Question 1: Defining Art

In a minimum of 2 well-developed paragraphs, address the following questions:

Do you consider a beautifully made tool to be a work of art? Is a utilitarian or functional object automatically excluded from being art? Explain why you feel this way.

In your response, discuss whether knowing the social and historical context matters when determining whether an object should be classified as a work of art. Must an object display certain visual characteristics to be considered art? If so, what are those characteristics?

Question 2: Paleolithic Cave Painting

As we learned this week, art historians analyze a work of art using a specific vocabulary to describe its physical and visual properties, and by interpreting its subject matter, symbolism, and socio-historical context.

Survey your course textbook and reliable online sources for a photograph of a Paleolithic cave painting from Pech-Merle, France; Altamira, Spain; or Lascaux, France.

First, fully identify your selected cave painting by its location and approximate date.

Read about your selected cave painting in the course textbook and/or through reliable online resources. In a paragraph of 5-7 sentences, describe the composition of the painting; its overall subject matter; the meaning of some of the objects in the painting; and any social, historical, and/or cultural factors that are important to understanding the painting. Be sure to provide citations for any outside sources you reference in this part of your response.

Respond to both discussion questions as thoroughly as possible, making sure to use information from the readings and the lectures. All responses should be in complete sentence form, using proper spelling and grammar. Be sure to explain your ideas clearly and support them by discussing specific works of art that you have read about this week, talking about how they illustrate and support your ideas.

Artistic Change in Sculpture

Relative to human history, the period covered in this week’s study is long. During this lengthy span of years, not only did people change in appearance, but the way they lived also changed radically. What we have found of their art and architecture also demonstrates an evolution in these areas.

Using your eBook, find one example of sculpture from each of the following periods: Paleolithic, Neolithic, and Bronze OR Iron Age.

View these sculpture pieces carefully. Capture an image of each of the three sculptures and place them in chronological order, from oldest to newest, in this template. Then, using information from your textbook, lectures, and other appropriate academic sources, provide the following regarding each image:

1. The title of the work, its location, the materials used to create the work (if known), and the date.

2. A brief assessment of the visual properties you observe. Describe the types of lines, shapes, colors and textures (actual and perceived) the artist has used.

3. An analysis of the formal structure of each piece. What is the meaning or importance of how the artist has arranged, organized, or structured the visual elements in the image?

4. The natural subject of each piece. Based on your textbook reading and Internet research, are there any details that have a symbolic meaning? If so, what?

5. A five- to seven-sentence paragraph that discusses the cultural context of each work, based on what you have learned through your textbook reading, the online lectures, and Internet research. What do the images tell you about the culture and the people who created them?

6. List of references, including the specific websites where you found the images

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