Below are the essay assignments. Choose one for each essay assignment and write a 500 (minimum) word essay on it. Be sure to cite specific examples of art work to illustrate your points.


While you may use your text and any other source for information, the essay must be entirely in your own words, except for relevant quotes, for which you must cite your source. Plagiarism will result in a grade of 0 for the essay. Please spend time looking at the art, comparing works, and making your own observations.


Essay #1


  1. Analyze a work of art.

Choose any work of art from our text and analyze it. First, in terms of its formal qualities; look for the elements of design and the way they are organized into the composition. Then, in terms of any iconography you can see. What role would this piece have played in the context in which it was originally made?



Essay # 2 Choose One.


1.     Find the "classical" in our contemporary world. Find instances where we find classical proportion and imagery or architecture in our everyday world. Look at civic structures as well as advertisements, corporate and educational brochures. Discuss the messages implied by the use of classicism in each instance


2.     Choose two cultures. Compare and contrast their art and architecture in terms of both form and its purpose within their cultural context. For some of these cultures we do not have conclusive data, you may survey the ideas advanced by scholars and/or draw your own conclusions, provided you clearly explain your reasoning.  Be sure to reference illustrations from the book or include images with your paper


3.      Discuss the history and development of bronze casting in early cultures.


Essay #3 Choose One


  1. Discuss art in the service of religion
  2. Discuss the development of the book
  3. Discuss the iconoclastic controversy
  4. Discuss the debate between Bernard of Clairvaux and Abbot Suger. How is that reflected in art?
  5. Compare the way in which any two cultures (in chapters 6-15) created and used art.