A Museum Research Paper



Works or art must be created before 1300 CE
Regardless of whether you choose to visit a museum or gallery and write about what you see or write an
architectural research paper based on visiting a monument, these tips will be very helpful. Since many
beginning students are uncertain about what to write about a work of art, provided here is a brief outline of
some points you should consider.
Works of art have been analyzed according to many different schemes. The following presents one such
scheme and it is not intended to be followed literally, but merely to help you make a systematic analysis of the
work of art you choose. Many of the categories will overlap, and some are obviously more important for certain
works than for others. Each work of art is a unique experience, and must be treated as such, the following
outline will help you experience more deeply the art work you have selected.
Give the title of the works, the names of the artists who created them, if known, the country and time period
when it was created, and the museum where it now exists. Make a note of the date of your (virtual) visit to the
Is the work a painting, a graphic, a sculpture or a piece of architecture? What materials were used: tempera,
acrylic, oil, stone, wood, metal, ceramic, etc.? What technique was used: engraving, lithography, etching, low
or bas relief, high relief, casting, carving, etc.?
Why did you select a given work or works? What interested you?
Context and Subject Matter:
What was the cultural context of the work? What meaning did it have for the people that created it?
What is represented? Is it a portrait, a genre scene, a mythological or biblical scene? Are there symbols in the
work? What does it mean? If you know the source of the story, for example the illustration of an ancient myth or
a biblical story, give the appropriate citation. How is the subject portrayed? What is its emotional context?

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