Analysis paper


Visit a major art museum and identify one artwork to describe and analyze.
Describe the work and how it is displayed.
Identify the style of the work.
Analyze the work by describing and applying commonly used approaches and criteria for analyzing works of art (basic elements and principles of


1. Length: Minimum of 1000-words/about 4 pages, double-spaced) not including title page and works cited page.
3. Outside research requirements—at least 1 source
4. Use MLA Citation format (cite in-text and on a citations page at the end)
5. Submit a reflection paragraph (about 100 words)

The objectives of this assignment is to write a four-page paper:

• Describe and analyze an artwork
• Identify the style

Reflection Paragraph due—submit it along with your
Internet materials—you may use websites, and periodicals


Remember that museums are often closed on Mondays. Check the museum website for Hours and Admission fees.




Choose a major museum to visit.

Take a self-guided tour–wander around a bit to get used to the atmosphere.

Now you’re ready to choose a single work of art. It can be a painting, print, sculpture, drawing, installation, etc. Feel free to pick whatever

piece seems to “speak” to you.

Take notes with a pencil. You may not be permitted to take notes at a museum with a pen.

You may be able to photograph the piece if you do not use a flash. Some exhibits may have a sign forbidding photography, so be sure to check.

After gazing at the piece for a significant amount of time, and taking notes, you are ready to do some research and begin writing.

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Minimum of 4 typed pages, double-spaced, that include the following:

1. Introduce your topic and identify the work by artist, title, date, medium, and size. Most of this information will be found on the label on

the wall near the work. In some cases, you might have to estimate the size.

2. Include Photographs—Attach a photo of the work, or link to the work, with your paper. Also include a selfie in front of the work. If you’re

not permitted to photograph the work then you can take a selfie in front of the museum.

3. Describe how the piece is displayed. Include information about how it is framed or installed and what is displayed next to it.

4. Research and discuss the Art Style. Identify the Art Style, such as Renaissance, Impressionism, Surrealism, etc. and describe an aspect of

the work that indicates the art style.
5. Describe the work using all of the art elements listed below. If the work does not relate to an element in any way, you should say so. The

description should be detailed enough so that a viewer unfamiliar with the work might be able to get a mental picture of it and give the reader

a sense of what the work looks like. You can begin with what is depicted, who or what is represented?

Art Elements

• Line
• Shape
• Space

• Value
• Color
• Texture

6. Analyze the work. You should analyze how the artwork relates to each of the principles of design. If the work does not relate to a principle

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in any way, you should say so.


Principles of Design
• Balance
• Repetition and Rhythm
• Scale and Proportion


• Emphasis
• Movement
• Harmony and Variety


7. In conclusion, discuss what about this work attracts you. Or, if you find that you no longer like it after focusing so much attention on it,

what about this work repels you? You might wish to consider whether you would like to see this work on your own wall or in the corner of your

room, every day?