Im doing art A-Level and need to do a contextual study. I must of been asleep when they were explaining it but I have no idea what it entails so am totally stuck on what I am meant to write about?!!
If anyone could give me any clue about what it involves and any example questions to do I would be SO grateful!
Please reply soon need to tell what im doing tomorrow!
Contextual studies is for those parts of the art and design curriculum that embrace art history, aesthetic theories and the social, economical, political, religious and numerous other contexts within which the practice of art and design, exists, develops and fulfils its purposes.
In short, it is the understanding of within the programme of study for art. that covers and focuses on the theoretical aspect of art in all its forms. You not only learn about the art itself, but also about things involved such as the time in which it was created. You may also cover the theories of Art and Design, examining the political and social influences that provide the backdrop to artistic production, and investigate the tools, materials and techniques used in that production.
I know this is a really old thread, but for anyone reading.... Contextual studies is you basically researching what YOU'RE currently doing in art, seeing how other artists have approached the same thing, both contemporary and older artists. Tbh we rarely research before the 1930s ish as it just stops being relevant! So, say you are doing a drawing module, you would gather some images from books and online (note the artist name, work name, medium and year, as well as the book/decent website you got it from) you might look at the pioneers like William Coldstream, who popularised measured drawing, and henry Moore who did some great charcoal work, plus contemporary artists like jenny Saville (but only gather images of examples of their drawing work as something like a sculpture would only be relevant if you were working on sculpture). You would then stick the images in your sketchbook, writing the info I mentioned underneath, then you would write a brief evaluation of each image, looking at composition, quality of line, how they have approached things like mood, perspective etc. The important thing about contextual research is that it shouldn't be done just to tick boxes on your course about proving to an examiner that you can research and analyse, but that it should be a resource for YOU as the artist. It should help you understand your own work better, it should give you ideas (don't be afraid to try something you see during your research as it shows you are willing to explore, and grow), and it should show you what the art scene is doing and hopefully help you work in a more intelligent and innovative way.
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