a history of western art

from the renaissance to the present

Remember the two Cardinal Rules for the exam

1. Answer the question

Don’t just describe what you see in the work

or throw out random facts from the readings or lectures.

2. Analyze the works

An answer that does not include specific analysis of the form and

subject matter of the work shown is certainly not a complete answer.

The exam will consist of:

Some identifications of works on the study guide by artist, title, style/period/movement, and date (within 10 years either way).

Some short answer (one word to one sentence) addressing basic terms and concepts. For example, "Term describing the pose of the human body standing at rest with its weight on one leg" (contrapposto); or "Art style or period primarily associated with the 17th century" (Baroque).

Some unknowns, in which I will show you a work we have not seen in class and you will need to identify the style/period/movement/artist as specifically as possible (e.g. “Mannerism,” “sublime landscape,” “Symbolism, probably Gauguin”) and describe the characteristics of the work that led you to that identification.

Some half-page slide essays, in which I will show you a single work from the study-guide that you will need to identify and then analyze in relation to a leading question (for example, I may show you Bernini’s Ecstasy of St Teresa and ask you to discuss the work in relation to the Catholic Counter-Reformation).

Some full-page slide comparisons, in which I will show you a pair of works to identify and analyze in relation to a leading question.

Here are some handy flashcards for the first exam.  Just write the name of the work and some key information on the right to study from; then fold over so you can quiz yourself.

study guide

for exam 1