Form, Content, and Subject Matter

1746 WordsNov 5, 20127 Pages
Form, Content, and Subject Matter GENZ 220Z-Art Critique Paper Shelby M. Dykes In this paper, I will discuss the form, content, and subject matter of three different paintings. Each of the paintings represents the following: representational painting, abstract painting, and a portrait. The paintings I have chosen are: Edward Hopper’s Nighthawks 1942, Wassily Kodinsky’s Colour Studies: Squares and Concentrentic Circles 1913, and Pablo Picasso’s Self-Portrait 1907. Representational paintings show clear objects or events and have a clear subject matter in the painting. The subject matter is quite evident in Edward Hopper’s Nighthawks. The subject matter is the dominating, brightly lit diner. The diner is proportionately large. It is built on…show more content…
I can almost picture Kandinsky’s brush moving around the painting in quick, swooping motions. The linear design of the painting is clear with the vertical and horizontal, fine lines painted as squares. Without a doubt, the “all-at –onceness” of the painting is created by the color. Kandinsky used such a wide range of color techniques that when I close my eyes upon viewing the painting, the image is still present. The colors are bright primary and secondary colors mixed with more earthy hues. The two overlapping circles on the bottom left are made evident by the low value of the green mixing with the saturated red to create almost a black. The contrast created by the black and yellow square touching is eye-catching. The gradation in the upper left square is evident by the continuous changes from the swirl surrounding the circle. It changes from yellow to green, then to blue and back to yellow! Can you feel the excitement in my description? This is what the painting makes me feel while participating. Despite the sectioned off circles and squares, the painting demonstrates unity. That is, the painting forms togetherness, despite contrasts of details and regions. The color also helps define the depth. As depth was clearly seen in Nighthawks, the depth of Colour Studie is not as readily evident. Look at the bottom left square. The circle seems somewhat flat. Now view the upper left square. It gives the feeling of protrusion. It seems as if the circle is popping out of the
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