AP Art History Summer Assignment
The summer assignment has 2 components. Please have both parts completed for the first day of school.
The written assignment must be typed and handed in the first day of school.
Please read the novel, Girl with a Pearl Earring by Tracy Chevalier (do not watch the movie in place of the
book. There are many differences between them). The book is well written and interesting and gives you
more insight into Vermeer’s paintings.
Be prepared to take a reading test upon return to school.
Success in Art History not only involves studying art in books, but seeing as much art as possible. We are so
fortunate to be so close to NYC and its wonderful museums. You are required to visit the Metropolitan
Museum of Art at any point during the summer. Please follow the directions below regarding the requirements
for this part of your summer assignment.
1. The link for the museum home page is: www.metmuseum.org Here you can find museum hours,
2. Take a digital photograph of yourself at the museum showing that you attended. You must include
something about the museum in your photo (ie. a sign in the background, holding a pamphlet etc.)
Hand a copy of the photograph in with your written assignment.
3. Keep your receipt and button from your visit. Hand this in with the written assignments.
4. As you walk through the galleries, select 3 painting by any 3 artists that stand out the most to you.
Take note of the title, year, medium (materials) and size and any other information that is important.
5. For those three paintings you must write a critique/synopsis of each painting. They should be 1-2
pages (types) per painting and answer the following questions (do not list, this response should be
in paragraph form).
a. Describe what you see (all physical qualities of the work). What is the main thing you
notice? What is the obvious subject matter? What is in the background/foreground? What
makes these objects visible?
b. How is composition used in the image (if you are unsure what composition means in regards
to art, do a Google search on the elements & principles of design)? How do line, shape,
value, texture, rhythm (pattern), size, and their interactions affect the viewer's response?
What about the relationship, repetition, balance and placement of the elements?
c. Speculate about the intentions of the artist. Why would this work be made? How would it
be used? Interpret meanings and symbolism you can speculate about. Does the work
convey a meaning, tell a story or have a mood or emotion? Why do you think so?
d. Is the piece successful? Why do you think it was included in the exhibit? Why do you like
ENJOY THE MUSEUM. I LOOK FORWARD TO THE JOURNEY WE ARE ABOUT TO TAKE AS
WE STUDY OVER 20,000 YEARS OF THE HISTORY OF ART.