Materials and Meaning Paper

Professor Lonergan


Write a paper on a contemporary sculptor of your choice. The person must be alive and the work should be no older than ten years. You should find two significant articles on the sculptor (3D objects), who must have been making work in the last ten years. Both articles must be from Art in America, Sculpture or Art News and be more than short reviews of a show; choose a different 3D Artist if you cannot locate two articles in these sources. You may not use, news papers or web sites for this paper. The paper should be approximately 50% research-oriented and 50% your own opinions and interpretations. You must attached copies of the articles.

If you don’t know of an Artist, browse print copies of Sculpture, Art in America, and/or ARTnews  until you find an image of a 3D Artist that interests you.  Print copies of these journals are all on the periodical shelves on the Main Level, in alphabetical order by TITLE. The latest single issue of each is on the slanted Current Periodicals shelves. Or there is a link to Sculpture magazine on the top of our syllabus for easying browsing. When you have chosen an artist and wish to find additional articles in the assigned journals, you can search the Art Full Text database (connect by clicking the “Databases” link at the left of the Library Home Page).

See the Reference Librarian if you have any questions about how to search the journals.

Sample Outline: A sample outline for a paper on Donna Lewis might look something like this:

  1. Introduction (1 paragraph)
    1. Attention-grabber
    2. Thesis
    3. Preview of Paper
  2. Descriptions of a piece or two—be specific about both concept and physical properties    (1/2 page)
  1. What is significant about her work (1/4 page)
  2. Your opinion about the methods and meaning of her work (3/4 page)
  3. Conclusion (1 paragraph)

General Notes: READ THIS

Your paper should have a title, page numbers, respectable margins, and 12 point font. Your statements should be backed up with examples of specific sculptures. The paper should be at least 2 pages long. Again, if you can’t find enough information to write a two page paper, choose a different sculptor. You must attach copies of the two articles that you useNo papers will be accepted without attached copies of the articles.

Citing Sources

Be sure to cite all of your sources using MLA or Chicago style (visit the library if you need more info on citing sources or look here). MLA style, for example, works like this. In the body of your paper, you use a quote or info from a source:

Jack Smith calls Donna Lewis’ work “innovative and arresting” (Smith 24).

Then, in your attached bibliography, you’d have a citation for Smith’s article:

Smith, Jack. “Donna Lewis’ Newest Work.” Journal Title 2 (100): 242-267.

See me if you need help! And feel free to use the Writing Center, too!

Paper Rubric

Intro10 points: interesting, catchy, focused, a good predictor of the rest of the paper
Overall Organization10 points: each paragraph has a topic sentence; all paragraphs relate to topic; smooth transitions between paragraphs
Conclusion10 points: summarizes and synthesizes arguments; is interesting and makes your reader think
Description20 points: clearly describes specific pieces, trends in career of artist, and/or life of artist
Critique20 points: clearly articulates your opinion about the work and your interpretation of one or more sculptures
Grammar10 points: no fragments, run-ons, or punctuation errors; spelling is correct, and sentences are clear
Quotes/Citing10 points: quotes formatted correctly; MLA style used correctly to cite all sources; articles are attached
Research10 points: uses a minimum of two sources from art journals; sources are integrated effectively into the paper. (5 points: emailed artist and 2 sources by end of class time).
Total Points
Paper Grade