Maya Lin, Formal Analysis and Public ART.
Maya Lin, Formal Analysis and Public ART.
As we consider a popular Memorial Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington DC, created by artist Maya Lin,
we reflect to see how artists interpret the events of our times through lasting installations of Art and how we
respond to the art through Formal Analysis. This assignment must be written in your own words as an observer.
Do NOT quote other sources.
Stages of completion:
● Read: Chapter 1, 2, 3 and focus on Maya Lin, pages 8 and 9 (Chapter 1 Living with Art, Smartbook)
● Read: Chapters 4 and 5 Living with Art, Smartbook.
● Read: Learn more about the 1970s https://www.history.com/topics/1970s/1970s
● View: Required Vietnam Veterans videos – all links are included here below.
● View: “How to do visual analysis in Art History”. How to do formal analysis in art history. Smart History
● Write: Part A and submit.
● Write: Part B involves your written responses to other student submissions (required for full credit). Don’t
forget to submit!
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Part A Instructions:
Write to the 3 prompts below. Submit your “Maya Lin” formal analysis following the instructions provided
here.
Prompt #1 – FORMAL ANALYSIS of Vietnam Veteran’s Memorial (50% of grade) or 500 words minimum
This is an exercise in observation and critical thinking. Do not quote other sources, use your own words. Take
inventory of all that you see in the art. Identify the 2 Visual Elements that you believe contribute greatly to the work’s
success. How do selected Visual Elements appear in the overall composition? Your analysis must demonstrate
understanding of the Visual Elements, as well as accurate application and use of art terminology. Support the
analysis by relating at least 2 Design Principles at play in the composition. How do selected Design Principles
appear in the overall composition? Use boldface when writing about the Visual Element/Design Principle to bring
attention to your selection. Support your analysis with strong supporting statements regarding Visual Elements and
Design Principles. Do your OWN writing. Don’t quote others. No citations are needed.
● The Visual Elements include line, shape, mass/volume, light/value, color, space/depth, texture, time/motion
(Chapter 4, Living with Art).
● The Design Principles include unity/variety; balance/symmetry, emphasis and focal point; proportion and
space; rhythm—(Chapter 5, Living with Art).
Prompt #2 – CULTURAL AWARENESS – CONTEXT & PERSPECTIVE (20% of grade) or 250 words minimum
As it relates to the Vietnam Veteran’s Memorial, analyze differences and commonalities among veterans, observers,
selection committee, artists, and art critics, in terms of aesthetic traditions – ways of viewing and talking about art,
historical and cultural practices, and customs of the period.
Prompt #3 – SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY – CONTEXT & PERSPECTIVE (20% of grade) or 250 words minimum
As it relates to the Vietnam Veteran’s Memorial, examine the ethical issues. Are these ethical and unethical questions
still relevant today? How may they relate to social issues we are currently contending with today?
When you are ready to submit Part A:
How to submit your writing by creating a Discussion Thread.
1. Click the title of the discussion topic.
2. Click the Create Thread button, enter your full name as seen in Bb Learn in the Subject..
3. Copy and paste Part A into the Message field.
4. Click Save Draft to return to the thread later, or Submit to post it. Don’t forget to Submit.