Worth 15% of final mark, due Tuesday, June 4th, 11:30 pm via SAKAI>Assignment Comparison Essay
Please read this entire document before you begin and before you email me with questions! This writing assignment is designed to help you learn different ways to write and think about art. For this assignment you will write a minimum 1000 word comparison (excluding footnotes, bibliography) of two artworks.
You may choose both of the following for this exercise:
4 a. Frans Hals, Isaac Massa and Beatrix van der Laen, c. 1622 (14-21), p. 388
b. John Singleton Copley, Thomas Mifflin and Sarah Morris (Mr. and Mrs. Mifflin), 1773 (17-1), p. 446.
How to Write a Comparison Essay
A comparison is an essay comprised of two aspects: comparing elements (noting the similarities) and contrasting elements (noting the differences) of one work with another. The aim of this exercise is to learn more about each work by looking at them alongside one another, as such this is largely a visual exercise of looking. You will be using the types of observations discussed in modules but applying this specifically to two works of art. Your paper must have a thesis and through comparing and contrasting the two works you will argue (prove) your thesis and reach a conclusion. There are two main approaches to writing a comparison: split or lump. This refers to the organization of your points on each artwork. If you want to compare and contrast a number of elements about each work this is splitting and if you write first of one work and then the other in separate paragraphs you are lumping. You may write either way but make certain that you have about the same number of points or observations for each work. Pay close attention to the organization of your paper, it should make sense and flow naturally back and forth between the works compared. Try to make a logical progression from one point to the next. You will want to examine each work of art closely. Ask yourself questions about the artwork: Why was this work made, for whom, by whom, in what style, what context and when? What is the work about? How does it convey a story, event, or particular meaning? How does the artist use form, colour, space, perspective and line? How is the composition arranged? What is the size and condition of the work, does this convey further meaning? Once you think about these types of questions for each work separately you will need to consider them together. Ask yourself, why is this comparison relevant, what becomes more apparent about the works when you look at them side by side? Consider the visual impact, but also the context of the artworks’ production and reception. Are they of the same style and time period or not, why does this matter, are values and cultural elements similar or different? Do 1 VISA 1Q99: Writing Assignment Worth 15% of final mark, due Tuesday, June 4th, 11:30 pm via SAKAI>Assignment these works convey the same message or something different, how is this done, how do you observe this in the works? Begin by making notes on each work and then the comparative/contrasting elements that you can write about for both works. From here begin to compose your essay by creating a thesis. Your thesis is a statement that gives direction to your analysis. Take care to organize, revise and edit your paper. Poor organization and lack of editing will detract from your observations and your grade. Format The paper must be 1000 words typed, double-spaced pages of your writing with the course name, your name, and student number on the first page along with a title. You do not need a separate title page for this assignment but if you use one this does not count towards the page length of this assignment. The length requirement is 1000 words excluding title page and bibliography/works cited. You might find it helpful to take a look on SAKAI>Resources>Written Assignment>Further Reading on Writing a Comparison. Links to websites with helpful information are posted there. If you have access to one of the optional resources for this course read Sylvan Barnet, A Short Guide to Writing About Art: “Writing a Comparison.” Research You are not required to do a lot of research for this paper–it is meant as a practice of looking, describing and evaluating. Begin by reading about the work in your textbook, if you find that you want to use further secondary sources, your paper must follow the Chicago Manual of Style citation format, MLA or APA. Basic information such as title, artist, date, origin of a work and general factual historical information do NOT need to be cited. You do need to cite information and ideas that you take from the textbook. Please see the links on SAKAI under Written Assignment>How to Cite Sources/Bibliographies, if you need help with citations. You will find citation style guidelines there. All secondary sources used in your writing (books, articles, websites, textbook, videos, etc.) must be cited, failure to do so constitutes academic dishonesty and will result in a grade of zero and possible failure in course. Please remember to CITE the textbook if you take more than general information from it! Due Date & Late Policy Papers are due June 4th by 11:30 pm submitted online (via SAKAI>Assignment). You will find under Assignments “Written Assignment #2,” from there you will be able to upload your paper as an attachment in most file types (.doc, .pdf). Be aware that SAKAI does not recognize MAC pages, please convert your file to .pdf before uploading. If we cannot open your file you will receive a grade of zero for the assignment. Once you have uploaded it you will be able to see the originality report for your paper. You will not be able to make changes once you have submitted your paper. Please do not panic when you view the report, often the material that is highlighted is simply your references, names of artist, or artworks. The penalty for late assignments is 5% per day. Failure to submit your paper on time due to internet difficulties is not a valid reason. Assignments handed in more than 5 days late will not be accepted. Exceptions to the lateness penalty for valid reasons such as illness, etc. will be judged by the instructor ONLY when supported by written documentation such as a medical certificate that are presented within 3 days of your absence. 2 VISA 1Q99: Writing Assignment Worth 15% of final mark, due Tuesday, June 4th, 11:30 pm via SAKAI>Assignment A Word about Turnitin.com in Assignment As it is the responsibility of the instructor to track and report plagiarism, we will be utilizing turnitin.com in Assignment on SAKAI. This is an anti-plagiarism tool that screens all assignments against a database of the internet, e-journals, e-books, and a range of other scanned material including other assignments and papers for courses at universities. This ensures that all assignments are graded on a level playing field and means the papers can be read for ideas and content rather than policed for plagiarism. If you should have concerns about the use of this anti-plagiarism tool these must be expressed to me via email before May 10th. Grading Your assignment will be number graded out of 15 with comments online and your numerical grade recorded under SAKAI>Gradebook. Please be aware because of the large number of students in this course it may take up to 1-2 weeks for your assignment grade to appear. Helpful Information: • Titles of artworks are italicized, dates follow in brackets i.e. Masaccio’s Holy Trinity (1425) is a fresco depicting the Madonna and child enthroned. • artists are referred to by full name initially and then subsequently by surname only • Avoid the use of colloquialisms and contractions in your essay (i.e. I’m, don’t, isn’t, it’s) • ‘its’ is a possessive form, ‘it’s’ is a contraction for it is • You may use the first person or chose to write from the third person perspective. For example: Immediately I noticed the use of saturated colour in the lower portion of the painting which gives a sense of ground and weight to the composition. OR: The use of saturated colour in the lower portion of the painting gives a sense of ground and weight to the composition. • Footnote or use MLA citations for all secondary material. Include a bibliography or works cited page. • You do not need to include images unless you refer to additional artworks. • If you use quotations (which should be used sparingly and ONLY when they support your thesis directly) cite them correctly and introduce them with your own text. For example: The bold use of Christian symbolism in combination with references to popular culture underscore what art critic Barbara Rose has named as “the religious mundane or popular icon.”1 • Paragraphs need a minimum of three sentences. • Edit your paper for errors, sometimes reading your paper out loud will help catch small errors.