Student’s will compare and contrast formal elements of design between two Crucifixion scenes: one from the Renaissance and one from the Modern era.
What is a formal analysis?
“The goal of a formal analysis is to explain how the formal elements of a work of art affect the representation of the subject matter and expressive content. The emphasis should be on analyzing the formal elements — not interpreting the artwork. That said, an understanding of the meaning of
the work is the final goal of any formal analysis.” (Pokinski, Deborah. “Writing a Formal Analysis in Art History.” Hamilton.edu, www.hamilton.edu/documents/formal%20analysis%20Art%20History.pdf.)
Here are a few helpful links to further explain this concept:
This assignment should have NO OUTSIDE RESEARCH. Your 3 page formal analysis should rely on observable truths and demonstrate your understanding of formal elements of design. Any formal elements used in the paper should be bolded for emphasis.
Students should compare and contrast the following formal elements and concepts in each painting:
While a formal analysis looks primarily at the form and not the content – here, be sure to discuss HOW the differences in these formal elements effects the emotional response the viewer has to each painting. Example: how is Nolde’s image of Christ more emotionally charged than Montegna’s?
Be sure your paper has a strong introduction and conclusion.
A few reminders when writing about art:
Emil Nolde. Crucifixion. Oil on canvas. 1912. (https://artforus.wordpress.com/2012/11/26/crucifixion/)
Andrea Mantegna. Crucifixion. Oil on canvas. 1457-60. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Mantegna,_Andrea_-_crucifixion_-_Louvre_from_Predella_San_Zeno_Altarpiece_Verona.jpg)
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