Visual Arts - Sculpture - annotated exemplar level 3 AS91444

Analyse methods and ideas from established sculpture practice (3.1)

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This annotated exemplar is intended for teacher use only. The student work shown does not always represent a complete sample of what is required. Selected extracts are used, focused on the grade boundaries, in order to assist assessors to make judgements at the national standard.

Low Excellence

Commentary
Student work extract

Student 1 (PDF, 8.5MB)

For Excellence, the student needs to critically analyse methods and ideas from established sculpture practice.

This involves:

  • explaining the significance of how and why art works are made, viewed, and valued
  • explaining complex relationships between selected approaches
  • placing these relationships within a wider social, political, geographic, or historical context
  • providing evidence of independent research from a wide range of sources were personal insight, evaluation, and conclusions are presented with supporting arguments.

This student has presented a sustained analysis of specific art works by four different sculptors: Tara Donovan, Shilpa Gupta, Subodh Gupta and Yuk King Tan. This has been followed by a comparative essay (1) that explains the relationships between the different methods and ideas. The opening sentence (2) identifies the consistent political intent and methodical strategy.

Specific information gained through the preceding detailed study of individual artists is used to support the wider discussion outlined in the conclusion. For example the student notes the influence of Pakistani/Indian political tension for Gupta (3), and the differences in approach with regard to the acquisition of materials for Tan and Donovan (4). This independent research provides insight into how works are made and how they relate to a wider social and political context.

For a more secure Excellence, the student could relate the contemporary works to the artistic precedents of this approach. For example, the ideas underpinning Marcel Duchamp’s readymades or Andy Warhol’s Brillo Boxes could show how the aesthetic innovation of using found objects has evolved into a political strategy. This would enable the student to explore a wider artistic/historical context.

High Merit

Commentary
Student work extract

Student 2 (PDF, 165KB)

For Merit, the student needs to analyse, in depth, methods and ideas from established sculpture practice.

This involves:

  • purposefully identifying key information related to methods and ideas
  • gathering information from a range of sources
  • using specific examples to support the student’s discussion of particular methods and ideas.

This student identifies a central proposition of transformation and deconstruction as a common theme to link the work of four different sculptors (the student’s analysis of Cornelia Parker is shown here). The student completes a sustained analysis of specific art works by each artist, addressing Cold Dark Matter: An Exploded View by Cornelia Parker in this extract (1).

References to other works by Parker (2) indicate that the information is gathered from a range of appropriate sources. Key ideas are supported by quotes from the sources (3), which are often explained in the students own words (4).

To reach Excellence, the student could further explain how the art works relate to a wider personal, social or historical context. For example, the title Thirty Pieces of Silver evokes a religious/moral implication, while Cold Dark Matter implies an astrophysical reading. The discussion of personal or social issues related to transformation/deconstruction (death/rebirth) could show the evaluative insight needed for Excellence.

The student may also relate the work to a wider artistic context such as the paintings of Futurism or the frozen motion of photography.

Low Merit

Commentary
Student work extract

Student 3 (PDF, 121KB)

For Merit, the student needs to analyse, in depth, methods and ideas from established sculpture practice.

This involves:

  • purposefully identifying key information related to methods and ideas
  • gathering information from a range of sources
  • using specific examples to support the student’s discussion of particular methods and ideas.

This student has identified the key aspects about the methods and ideas of Stephen Birch. The reference to pop culture (2) and reconsideration of superheroes in relation to normal society (4) summarise the key issues relating to the work.  

The student includes relevant quotes selected from appropriate research sources (1). The second quote from the Spiderman narrative itself (3) may indicate that sources from outside academic art texts have been used to support the key idea.

For a more secure Merit, the student could further explore the formal and sculptural aspects of the work such as the occupation of space, or the relationship with the viewer. In this work the life sized proportions have a particular effect on how viewers react. Discussing this aspect would enhance the depth of the analysis.

A comparative discussion may also be useful, such as comparing Birch’s work to artists like Duane Hansen or Ron Mueck who explore a lifelike figurative approach. Michael Parekowhai’s Kapa Haka (Wero) also presents a life size figure, but the choice of subject, style and fabrication materials create a very different outcome.

Alternatively, the student could discuss the postmodern ironic approach to comic materials, in relation to 1960s Pop Art approaches from artists such as Roy Lichtenstein.

High Achieved

Commentary
Student work extract

Student 4 (PDF, 152KB)

For Achieved, the student needs to analyse methods and ideas from established sculpture practice.

This involves:

  • identifying, describing, and examining features of art works
  • identifying information related to methods and ideas
  • explaining how and why art works are made, viewed, and valued
  • distinguishing similarities and differences between approaches to making art
  • research into the established practice of at least three artists from at least two sources.

This student makes clear connections between particular methods and ideas in the work of Robert Gober. The identification that the hair is the artist’s own (2) indicates a self-portrait function. This is followed by an explanation of how the work expresses sexual orientation and wider social issues (4) (5). The relevant and specific nature of this information means that it is likely to be drawn from appropriate sources.

The student considers how and why viewers may react to the work in a particular way (3) (6).

To reach Merit, the student could unpack other aspects of the work rather than focusing exclusively of the social activism message. The work could be compared to other installation, body art or realist approaches. A deeper analysis may also discuss the work in relation to the artist’s own oeuvre.

An in-depth analysis would also build upon the information contained in the extensive quote (1). In particular the ideas of hermaphrodism, domesticity, banality and the strategy of meticulously recreating reality could be researched and explained.

Low Achieved

Commentary
Student work extract

Student 5 (PDF, 3MB)

For Achieved, the student needs to analyse methods and ideas from established sculpture practice.

This involves:

  • identifying, describing, and examining features of art works
  • identifying information related to methods and ideas
  • explaining how and why art works are made, viewed, and valued
  • distinguishing similarities and differences between approaches to making art
  • research into the established practice of at least three artists from at least two sources.

This student has provided some explanations of how sculptural features are used to create a particular effect (3) in the sculpture Jim McMurty by Michael Parekowhai. The scale of the work is also explained in terms of its symbolic associations (1).

The irony of the disparity between positive intentions (Disney, cutesy) and negative outcomes (dominating colonisation) is clearly stated (2).

The inclusion of quotes (4) indicates that some research has occurred.

For a more secure Achieved, the student could provide more sustained unpacking of other key aspects relevant to this work.

A full analysis at Level 3 would include some references to other artists working in similar ways. Distinguishing similarities and differences between the inflatable pieces of Claus Oldenburg or postmodern animal characters of Jeff Koons with Jim McMurty, would be highly appropriate. Comparing the sculpture with other work by Parekowhai such as The Barefoot Potter Boy’s Brigade would also be useful.

The quote included (4) should be more clearly related to the methods and ideas of the identified art work. The student could explain how the work was viewed in different countries and the meaning of the title.

High Not Achieved

Commentary
Student work extract

Student 6 (PDF, 2.3MB)

For Achieved, the student needs to analyse methods and ideas from established sculpture practice.

This involves:

  • identifying, describing, and examining features of art works
  • identifying information related to methods and ideas
  • explaining how and why art works are made, viewed, and valued
  • distinguishing similarities and differences between approaches to making art
  • research into the established practice of at least three artists from at least two sources.

This student has begun to identify some relevant features of Suitcase Wheel by The Art Guys (1). They offer a possible meaning for the work (2) and show awareness of preceding approaches to art in the reference to readymade art (3). 

To reach Achieved, the student could further identify, describe and examine the features of the sculpture. This would include how particular sculptural features such as size and geometry are used to force the viewer to reconsider the form and function of a suitcase.  

The student could further develop some ideas that are mentioned to show the quality of analysis required for Achieved at Level 3. For example, how does this work relate to other readymade art works (3) or what features support the idea of world travel (4)?

For Achieved, the descriptive and speculative responses would need to be supported with more specific information derived from relevant research sources. For example, the location of the work at San Antonio Airport and the humour oriented practice of The Art Guys are key aspects for the analysis of this work.

 
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