Art (Fine arts, Performing arts) Response Essay

Written responses to the class material will document the development of our own thought over the course of the semester. You will respond with your ideas, thoughts, contemplations regarding the readings/videos/websites that I will post you in “Additional Materials”.

Focus your writing on the following:

After completing the readings and visual materials, record your reaction to the main ideas or themes. Examine what was intriguing, stimulating, provocative, or insightful about each assigned work. Record your insights and “ahas.” Do not make general statements; explain what you mean with detail, examples, and further thoughts. Cite relevant passages, events, and examples from the readings and videos, where appropriate. Take me through your thought process to explain how the readings and videos led you to your conclusions. Do your best to describe your thoughts, ideas, feelings, reactions, etc. on a multisensory, intellectual, and philosophical level.

More briefly, record your reactions to materials, including concepts and questions that came up in the Discussion Board. Raise questions about the discussion and videos, and record your insights and “ahas.” How did you share your voice and experience to contribute to the ongoing conversation? What critical thinking questions did you pose to your coursemates? Again, do your best to describe your thoughts, ideas, feelings, reactions, etc. on a multisensory level.

Your written response might treat each assigned subject separately, or you might choose to group the readings and videos into an essay that analyzes them comprehensively. Whichever way you decide to organize your response, list the subjects of the writing in the header for each section (that is, the names of the readings and/or videos you are addressing in that section).

NOTE: The subject of the response is the ideas in the readings/videos, not whether you liked or did not like the assigned work or artists.

All these writings should not just address the assigned readings, videos, or museum experiences, but they should also make connections with other materials that you are reading, seeing, thinking about, etc. They may contain descriptions, observations, questions, etc. about aesthetic experiences; ruminations about materials presented in class; relevant quotations; thoughts about other arts experiences you are having; etc. You should be recording the development of your notions about aesthetic experience. These writings should constitute a record of developments in your thinking that the course materials may invoke and provoke. Be open, responsive, creative, and thoughtful. Taken together, these responses should document the development of your intellectual development, as well as your embodied mutlisensory experience, over the course of the semester.
((More than half your grade will be based on these written responses. They will be evaluated on the basis of the thought and care demonstrated, the completeness and quality of presentation, the thoughtful and embodied engagement with the ideas in the readings and videos, and evidence of intellectual development.)

Ackerman, A Natural History of the Senses, “Touch” (65-123)


Jeanette Winterson, “ Art Objects”
Calvin Tomkins, “ After Shock: What Has Damien Hirst Done to Art?

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