Revision: Art Analysis

Learning goals

Students will:

  1. Compare and contrast the ways in which two historical socieites viewed art with attention to fresh water.
  2. Analyze the importance of accessing, using, and making meaning with water to different historical socieities.
  3. Demonstrate [historical thinking( through an artistic production.


  • Choose one of the objects you wrote about for your Project.
  • Choose a second object from our Week 4 readings.
  • Imagine the artists that made these two objects in a room, deciding to make a new piece of art that addresses the ways their respective societies think about fresh water.
  • Create that art: this could be a drawing you do, architecture, or an object. Use only art forms that are covered in your readings. So, no poems, songs, or epic MMO games that end in world domination.
    • If you do not wish to create the object artistically, describe what the art would look like and its details using complete sentences in a paragraph.
  • Below your art or your paragraph describing your synthetic artwork, provide the reasoning for why you made the choices you did with specific references to the historical context of the each society.

**Example using Shaded Dwellings among Streams and Mountains and Harpoon

(I’m using one object from my World 1 and World 2 class)

My art is a copper plate of about 1 foot squared with an etching of a river landscape. The plate will be buried with a local leader near a river. (Students should then give a fuller description of their piece, or create it visually.)

Paragraph analysis questions you may consider (your analysis can be different than these questions)

  1. How did each artist originally think about fresh water and how does your piece reflect their thinking?
  2. Do your two societies interact in time or place, or is your piece a completely ahistorical mashup?
  3. How does the form (the physical sight and touch) of your piece relate to the value of the artist?
  4. What contrasting values did you have to address in creating your piece?
  5. What year, location, and historical context do you know from our background readings?
  6. What other information would you want to learn to improve the historical realism of your art?