PLEASE NOTE: this is additional reflection following tutor feedback on the original 2000-word essay
Further Reflection on Final Assignment in Response to Feedback from Tutor
Having considered the tutor feedback in some detail I revisited my final assignment. On review I felt that the tutor’s comments were both valid and useful. Allowing time between writing the assignment and re-reading it gave me a refreshed perspective and I have reworked the essay accordingly.
Key areas identified were:
The introductory sentence being confusing with a double negative:
This has now been split into three shorter sentences to allow removal of the double negative and clarification.
Referencing pages in hard copy and alphabetising references by surname first:
These have been added/corrected as appropriate.
Generalisations regarding purpose of art in galleries being purely for entertainment:
Having carried out further research I can see that whilst art may be for enjoyment it may also have a dual (or alternative) purpose such as to convey a message that is educational, moral or allegorical. I have revised the essay to address this point.
Tightening up the essay to facilitate more in-depth analysis of the three main critics’ approaches:
Removing some of the generalisations and duplication made room to incorporate a more thorough analysis of the critics’ approaches. The result is an essay more focused on supported opinion rather than generalisation.
I have amended the essay to include references and contextualise all illustrations.
Considering the contexts in which the artists were working
On revisiting the work it was clear that this aspect had been under-represented in the essay and was crucial to the arguments. As above I have tightened up the essay elsewhere to enable additional reference to be made to importance of the context in which artists operate when evaluating their work.
Removal of the last passage to avoid
When re-reading the essay it was clear that this section was out of place in the context of the subject matter. Whilst an interesting thing to reflect on, it did not fit within the scope of the title. I therefore removed the final section and returned to the three critics, pulling together their analyses and commenting on the title in the context of their work.
It has been a very useful exercise to put away the essay and revisit it after a period of reflection. Inconsistencies and non-sequiturs are much more apparent because it enabled me to read the essay more as an external reader rather than as the author. I can see how my own personal views were perhaps given too much emphasis without supporting evidence (particularly the final section). This comes back to the feedback from Assignment One where the tutor explained that the purpose of the course is art history rather than art appreciation. I had lost sight of this to some extent in my enthusiasm about the topic.
On which note, my keen interest in the subject meant that it was challenging to keep to the word limit and to be focused. Again, the tutor feedback was very useful in this, enabling me to bring the essay back on point and eliminate the generalities as part of the rework.
Overall, I gained a great deal from the final assignment and from the course as a whole. I consider I am much more able to read paintings and to see beyond my instinctive response. I am better equipped to contextualise paintings, understand how the subject matter fits into its era and addresses its function. I also have a greater understanding of how to evaluate composition, light and shade, media and materials and the application techniques of those materials to achieve particular results.
This has been an excellent course and I am very grateful to my tutor for the high quality and detailed feedback.