Comparison of Art periods


Works of art vary greatly across genres and time periods. Some works of the humanities seem to have originated from the minds of specific individuals or from social and cultural influences, while other works of art were influenced by the styles and characteristics of earlier periods and are often a continuation of or reaction to those artistic styles. For example, classical art from ancient Greece and Rome was revived during the neoclassical era. Cubism was a reaction to the style and characteristics of the earlier European tradition of realistic painting. The purpose of this task is to analyze, critique, and understand where creativity and inspiration originate.

Your goal for this task is to discuss and analyze creativity as the continuation of, or as a reaction to, an earlier historical art period. You will choose two historical periods from the list below and discuss the relationships between the periods. You should discuss how one period revived or continued the style and characteristics of the other period or how one period originated in reaction to the other period.

The following is a list of historical art periods you can choose from:

• Classical

• Middle ages

• Renaissance

• Mannerism

• Baroque

• Rococo

• Neoclassical

• Romanticism

• Realism

• Impressionism

• Post impressionism

• Cubism

• Dadaism

• Geometric abstraction

• Pop art

• Surrealism

• Harlem Renaissance


A. Choose two art periods from the list above and write an essay (suggested length of 3–5 pages) in which you do the following:

1. Describe the earlier historical art period, characteristics of the style, and social conditions that may have contributed to the advent of this style.

2. Describe the later historical art period, characteristics of the style, and social conditions that may have contributed to the advent of this style.

3. Analyze the relationship between the historical art periods.

a. Explain similarities or differences between the historical art periods.

b. Explain the purpose for continuing the tradition of the earlier historical art period or deviating from it.

1. Reference at least one specific work of art from each period in your discussion.

2. Explain how the later work relates to the earlier work.

c. Explain the influence the later historical art period had on the art world (i.e., its historical significance).

Note: You should assume that your audience has a basic knowledge of the art periods. You will want to identify both periods in your essay and describe the art periods (time periods, characteristics, and social conditions that may have contributed to the advent of the styles of the period), but you will want to do so in a way that will allow your readers see how the descriptions support your thesis concerning the relationship between the two art periods.

B. When you use sources, include all in-text citations and references in APA format.

Note: When bulleted points are present in the task prompt, the level of detail or support called for in the rubric refers to those bulleted points.

Note: For definitions of terms commonly used in the rubric, see the Rubric Terms web link included in the Evaluation Procedures section.

Note: When using sources to support ideas and elements in a paper or project, the submission MUST include APA formatted in-text citations with a corresponding reference list for any direct quotes or paraphrasing. It is not necessary to list sources that were consulted if they have not been quoted or paraphrased in the text of the paper or project.

Note: No more than a combined total of 30% of a submission can be directly quoted or closely paraphrased from sources, even if cited correctly. For tips on using APA style, please refer to the APA Handout web link included in the APA Guidelines section.


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