IDEAS ABOUT JUDGING ART

 

FROM THE DR. RODNEY CHANG'S ART JOURNAL, JUNE 1984

 

 

BOTH LAYPERSON AND PROFESSIONAL JUDGE CRITERIA PRESENTED

 

LAYMAN'S APPROACH

1. stimulation/confrontation - does it do anything to/for you?

2. pattern recognition - what is it?

3. novelty - does it get and keep your attention; does it make you curious?

4. relates to personal experience or history, brings forth a personal or cultural identity - is it "you"?

5. subject matter preference - do you like the subject or find it interesting, thought provoking?

 

PROFESSIONAL JUDGING

APPROACH NO. I

 1. initial effect - stimulation

 2. sense "presence", it "works"

 3. medium identity and control, complexity

 4. analysis of detail, attention to finishing/refinement

 5. discovery of conceptual message(s), meaning, statement

 6. historical context of the piece

 7. social, cultural, political context

 8. composition and integration

 9. appropriateness of title with piece, clarity, conceptual depth

10.generalization of over-all quality

11.relative merit to rest of pieces in the juried exhibition

12.any information/background of artist (such as reason for doing the art; piece in relationship to artist's problem solving or artistic development)

APPROACH NO. II

A. First Impression

B. Simulation/Physiological

 1. initial reaction

 a visual intrique/attraction/intensity

 b. power of overall design

 c. perceptual/physiological stimulation

 d. it "works" or is clumsy

 e. overall presentation

 f. novelty

C. Personal Reaction: SUBJECTIVE

2. subjective reaction

 a. emotional

 b. unconscious

 c. intellectual, conceptual

 d. thematic, subject matter preferences of viewer

 e. medium preferences of reviewer

D. Scrutinization: ANALYTICAL

3. attention to details

 a. craftsmanship

 b. difficulty of execution

 c. handling of the medium/media

 d. amount of labor

 e. detailing work

 f. composition strength

 g. quality of line, surface, form, texture

 h. interrelationship of all visual elements

E. SIGNIFICANCE/CONTEXTUAL

4. historical relationship - ideas, problems, use of materials

5. relationship to local art scene, national art scene

6. cultural/social/political statement that the work makes

7. significance as original piece and concept - issues it addresses such as high technology, systems approach, aesthetic philosophy

F. AESTHETICS, PHILSOPHICAL - formal criticism, aesthetic philosophy

G. COMPETITIVE

8. "quality" and significance relative to the other works in the show

H. EXTRANEOUS CONSIDERATIONS

 a. size of total exhibition space

 b. reputation of juror

 c. reputation of artist if known

 d. audience taste and values

 e. creation of compatible and coherent show, theme, etc.

 f. political relationship of show

 g. reputation of gallery, type of preferences in past

 h. personality of juror, education of juror

 i. quantity of works exhibited

 j. size relationships of other submitted pieces; overall show installation/lay out

 k. amount of commitment/work/cost-piece and work installation by the artist

 l. political nature of piece, sexual or religious overtones, etc.

 m. lighting

 n. originality

 o. age and sex of juror

 p. marketability of the work

 q. time element of the work

 r. potential further development of the work

 s. local regionalism versus universal appeal

 

 

 

ADVICE TO ENTRANTS INTO JURY SHOWS -  There are many reasons why artworks are rejected, accepted, given awards, or pass over for recognition. Don't take things so personal.  Don't take juried shows so seriously.  Your work indeed may been worthy to be included in a show.  Maybe it is the "Best in Show."  Be assured there are many other artists participating in the show who secretly don't agree with the choice.  But remember, "beauty is in the eyes of the beholder."  In the jurying process, an individual is designated as expert.  He or she may not like dolphins, or just your frame selection.