A discipline-based art education model for criticism and inquiry directed to non-western art



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Texas Tech University


The purpose of this professional problem is to develop a discipline-based art education model for criticism and inquiry directed to non-Western art to be used at the college level. The study includes a review of the literature concerning art appreciation and art criticism/inquiry dating from 1900, and outlines models for art criticism/inquiry used by educators in the classroom. Throughout the review, a search was conducted for applications of models specifically intended for non-Western art, but it was found that current models are directed primarily to Western artworks.

The ten-step model developed for this study introduces novice art students to art criticism and inquiry through its application to non-Western art, and an exemplary application in the appendix is directed to an artwork from Afghanistan selected from a series of audio-visual presentations developed by the author.

Students are led to search for information in the form of both internal and external cues in forming premature and tentative decisions or evaluations before arriving at an informed, final judgment about an artwork. The model functions as a tool by providing a framework for viewing and analyzing these foreign and unfamiliar works derived from different cultural, religious and social perspectives, and is intended to encourage students to delay judgments until an optimum measure of information has been collected.

The procedural considerations concerning the methods through which criticism for non-Western art is generated and ordered include the following: the need for a critical theory of art that questions the appropriateness of traditional art models for non-Western art; the influence of cross-cultural interpretations for responding to, examining, analyzing and judging non-Western art; and the potential use of the model as a tool for encouraging appreciation of non-Western art.

In conclusion, this study has the potential to play a relevant role in teaching non-Western art appreciation as well as providing an impetus for educating Western students about the diversity of foreign cultures and the influences of the art from those cultures. Historically, emphasis in art appreciation has been placed on the use of models of criticism which exclude critical study of non-Western art. If education is to be meaningful and meet the needs of a culturally diverse nation and world, discipline-based art education must contain both the critical study of Western and non-Western art.



Art, Art appreciation -- Study and teaching (Higher), Art -- Study and teaching (Higher), Art criticism -- Study and teaching (Higher), Asian -- Study and teaching (Higher)