Chapter 1 SummaryEnglish
Art in Your World
Lesson 1: What Is Art?
A work of art is the visual expression of an idea or experience.
Visual art includes many types of media. It is used to communicate
with others in ways that go beyond words. To understand a
work of art, you must develop the ability to perceive. To
perceive is to become deeply aware through
the senses of the special nature of a visual object.
People create art to serve many functions. (1) They create
art to express personal feelings. (2) They use art to express
a family, community, or civilization’s identity. (3)
Often, artists create art to express spiritual beliefs. (4)
Some artists use new ideas and technologies to give functional
objects, such as cars and buildings, new and interesting forms.
(5) Artists often create art to teach people. This book will
help you understand and recognize all the visual arts.
Lesson 2: Why Do Artists Create?
The urge to create art is universal. Artists
are creative individuals who use imagination and skill
to communicate in visual form. They are driven by their
sense of wonder and curiosity. However, the impulses that
drive artists to create vary. Different artists can represent
the same event or idea in very different ways. Artists get
their ideas from many different sources. (1) Some artists,
like the landscape painters of the Hudson River School, get
ideas from nature. (2) Other artists get ideas from people
and real-world events. (3) Many artists interpret myths and
legends in their work. (4) In every culture, art is used to
express spiritual and religious beliefs. (5) Many artists
develop creative techniques to create their art. For example,
Jackson Pollock expressed his personal feelings by creating
a new technique—dripping paint onto canvas (Figure 1.13,
page 14). (6) Artists also learn from and build on the work
of artists of the past. (7) And some artists get ideas from
the people who hire them to create art. Artists keep sketchbooks
for inspiration. They use them to record images and jot down
ideas. A sketchbook is also very useful to practice skills
Lesson 3: The Language of Art
The language of art is made up of certain elements arranged
according to basic principles. Learning to use this language
will help you understand art and create your own artworks.
We use the elements of art, which are basic
visual symbols in the language of art, to communicate
ideas. These symbols are line, shape and form, space, color,
value, and texture. By learning to read one element at a time,
you will see how the elements work together to communicate
the language of art. These elements are organized according
to the principles of art. The principles of art
are basic rules that govern how artists organize the elements
of art. These rules are rhythm, movement, pattern, balance,
proportion, variety, emphasis, harmony, and unity. You will
learn more about these rules as you read this book. When you
look at a work of art, you should first identify its three
basic features: subject, composition, and content. The subject
is the image viewers can easily identify in a work of
art. The composition is the way
the principles of art are used to organize the elements of
art. The content is the message
the work communicates. Works of art in this book also
have credit lines below them. Credit lines
include important facts that will help you further understand
each work of art. The six facts most credit lines include
are name of the artists, title of the work, the year the work
was created, the medium used by the artist, the size of the
work, and the location of the work.