Using the Elements of Art, compare and contrast the two sculptures below, Pregnant Woman by contemporary sculptor, Ron Mueck, and Venus of Willendorf (Anonymous.)


You must focus on the art IN the discourse. Do a web-search to get some background on each sculpture, and other works by Ron Mueck. I do not want a biography of the artist! Any artist biographical information should be very brief and only serve to strengthen your response to the specific questions in the assignments. Remember use the vocabulary, define, and apply it. Describe the art, analyze for style, interpret for meaning, and judge it by comparing it. (The woman in black is a real person who is viewing the sculpture, and helps us to see the scale of the sculpture.) Don’t force all of the Elements of Art; texture, form, and color would be more appropriate when describing the art in this assignment. But do describe each piece as if you are describing each one to someone who has never seen them. What material or medium was used to create the sculpture (media)? Media would be for example: sculpture, painting, printmaking, etc. What is a sculpture? What does 2D and 3D mean? How do you think the period in which each sculpture was made determine the material used? What does scale or size tell us about each sculpture? What about the detail or lack of detail tell us about the meaning of each sculpture? You must back up everything that you say with visual detail! (One Page)

Elements of Art

Color:In visual art, the appearance of surfaces in terms of hue, value, and intensity.Color can be defined as primary (red, yellow, blue), which are found in nature, or secondary (green, orange, purple), which need to be mixed.Tint (adding color to white to make a color lighter), or shade (adding black or a darker tone added to a color to make it darker).A color is at full intensity when it is “true”, or “full of itself”, for example a true red.When you start adding other colors to it, for example adding orange to red, it loses its full intensity, and becomes orange red.It is called “tonal” value when color is added to color for purpose of making it lighter or darker.

Line:Line is a long thin mark that is used to define a shape or form.It can be thick or thin, broken, curved, angular, zigzag, broken, wavy…Artists use them to make objects appear flat (a thick line defining shape), or to make objects have a 3D appearance on an otherwise flat surface (a thin or broken line).Line is an important concept to understand when looking at compositions in art.A composition is the arrangement of objects in a painting.It can either be very calming; where the objects general direction of the lines tend to be vertical or horizontal, or exciting; where the objects or lines are diagonals.This is very important to understand in this course.

Space:Space is the area provided for a particular purpose. It may have two dimensions (length and width), such as a floor, or it may have three dimensions (length, width, and height). Space includes the background, foreground and middle ground. Space refers to the distances or areas around, between or within components of a piece. There are two types of space: positive and negative space. Positive space refers to the space of a shape representing the subject matter. Negative space refers to the space around and between the subject matter.Space can either have a closed form; where the sculpture or painting is self contained with no implication for anything outside of it, or open form; where there is a sense that there is something outside of the sculpture or painting.Painters who work with 3D illusion on a flat surface are creating the effect that something looks real even though it is not, for example trompe l’oeil painting.William Harnett and Dutch Painters are known for this type of art.Museum goers were accused of trying to touch Harnett’s paintings to see if there were real objects in them, they looked so real.

Form:Form may be created by the forming of two or more shapes or as three-dimensional shape (cube, pyramid, sphere, cylinder etc.). It may be enhanced by tone, texture and color. Form is considered three-dimensional showing height, width and depth.Form can also be geometric or angular, or organic.(See “Shapes” for examples of angular and organic).

Shape:Shape pertains to the use of areas in two dimensional space that can be defined by edges, setting one flat specific space apart from another. Shapes can be geometric (e.g.: square, circle, triangle, hexagon, etc.) or organic (such as the shape of a puddle, blob, leaf, boomerang, etc.) in nature. Shapes are defined by other elements of art: Space, Line, Texture, Value, Color, Form.

Texture:The texture is the quality of a surface of a painting or sculpture.It can feel or look smooth or rough, or the illusion of texture; simulated or actual.Picasso used simulated texture in his Cubist collages, where he created the illusion of actual texture, and actual texture, where he inserted real objects into his collages.

Value:Value is the lightness or darkness of color.Painters add white to value to make it lighter, or add black or darker tones to color to make them darker.

*Like the Elements of Sound, it is essential that you understand the Elements of Art.We will use them throughout the course.

*The Elements of Art can also apply to music and literature, in one way or another.

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