Question 1: Defining Art

In a minimum of 2 well-developed paragraphs, address the following questions:

Do you consider a beautifully made tool to be a work of art? Is a utilitarian or functional object automatically excluded from being art? Explain why you feel this way.

In your response, discuss whether knowing the social and historical context matters when determining whether an object should be classified as a work of art. Must an object display certain visual characteristics to be considered art? If so, what are those characteristics?

Question 2: Paleolithic Cave Painting

As we learned this week, art historians analyze a work of art using a specific vocabulary to describe its physical and visual properties, and by interpreting its subject matter, symbolism, and socio-historical context.

Survey your course textbook and reliable online sources for a photograph of a Paleolithic cave painting from Pech-Merle, France; Altamira, Spain; or Lascaux, France.

First, fully identify your selected cave painting by its location and approximate date.

Read about your selected cave painting in the course textbook and/or through reliable online resources. In a paragraph of 5-7 sentences, describe the composition of the painting; its overall subject matter; the meaning of some of the objects in the painting; and any social, historical, and/or cultural factors that are important to understanding the painting. Be sure to provide citations for any outside sources you reference in this part of your response.

Respond to both discussion questions as thoroughly as possible, making sure to use information from the readings and the lectures. All responses should be in complete sentence form, using proper spelling and grammar. Be sure to explain your ideas clearly and support them by discussing specific works of art that you have read about this week, talking about how they illustrate and support your ideas.

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