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The Arts include dance. Credit: Jackleen Farrell-Daniels.

Arts are often thought of as subjects of study primarily concerned with the processes and products of human creativity and social life, such as languages, literature, and history (as contrasted with scientific or technical subjects).

The arts are the various branches of creative activity, such as painting, music, literature, and dance.


The temple of Zeus is in Cyrene, Eastern Libya. Credit: David Holt.{{free media}}
The house on falling water is in West Orange, Pennsylvania, USA. Credit: Serinde.{{free media}}

Def. the art and science of designing and managing the construction of buildings and other structures, particularly if they are well proportioned and decorated"[1] is called architecture.


Hieroglyphics found at El-Khawy in Egypt show two storks, back to back, with an ibis between them (left), as well as a bull's head (right). Credit: John Darnell, Yale University.{{fairuse}}
A little elephant is shown inside an adult elephant, an indication that the animal is pregnant. Credit: John Darnell, Yale University.{{fairuse}}

The "Atlantic period [is] 4.6–6 ka [4,600-6,000 b2k]."[2]

"This newly discovered rock art site of El-Khawy preserves some of the earliest — and largest — signs from the formative stages of the hieroglyphic script [such as the back-to-back storks in the image on the right dating back around 5,200 years] and provides evidence for how the ancient Egyptians invented their unique writing system."[3]

Another "carving, [shows] a herd of elephants, created sometime between 4000 B.C. and 3500 B.C. One of the adult elephants in the scene was drawn with a little elephant inside its body [in the image on the right] — an incredibly rare way of representing a pregnant female animal."[3]


20th-century Rwandan bottle: artistic works may serve practical functions, in addition to their decorative value. Credit: Cliff, Arlington, VA USA.

Bottle, Tswa peoples, Rwanda, Early-mid 20th century, Ceramic, resin, commercial paint, wax: Potters--primarily women--hand-build a variety of vessels that they embellish with beautiful colors, designs and motifs before firing them at low temperatures. Containers made for daily use hold water or serve as cooking utensils. They also make vessels to be used in special ceremonies or that become part of an assemblage of objects placed in a shrine. The brilliant red, bold zigzag motif was probably rendered with imported paint and applied to the body after firing. The surface was covered with wax to enhance the natural color of the clay. The paint and wax may have been applied to the bottle by someone other than the potter.


The diagram shows dance notation for La Cachucha, by Friedrich Albert Zorn. Credit: Huster.{{free media}}
Valerie Sutton demonstrates a dance pose and its corresponding "Sutton DanceWriting" notation. Credit: Valerie Sutton.{{free media}}

In dance composition there are elements, notations, quantities, and their relations.

"Historically, the basic methodology for dance composition is a show-and-tell model: present the movement study, then critique it. If creativity is truly paramount to the development of artistry and choreographic skill, that pedagogical value should be reflected in the unifying structure of the course—the way time is used, assignments given, in teaching behaviors, and modes of assessment. Using the acronym C.R.E.A.T.E. to identify six pedagogical targets, [an approach is proposed] for designing a composition course. The pedagogical principles—Critical reflection, Reason for dance making, Exploration and experimentation, Aesthetic agenda, Thematic integrity, and Expression and experience—are proposed as guides."[4]

That there is a dance notation is demonstrated by the image on the right.


King Jehu of the Kingdom of Israel bows before Shalmaneser III of Assyria. Credit: Chaldean.

In 842 BC the Kingdom of Israel and the Phoenician cities sent tributes to Shalmaneser III. The image on the right is from the Black Obelisk of Shalmaneser III and depicts King Jehu of the Kingdom of Israel bowing before Shalmaneser III of Assyria.


Main source: Literature
This is a scan of the title page of the First Folio of William Shakespeare's plays. Credit: Ham.

Literature is the art of written work, and can, in some circumstances, refer exclusively to published sources.

The two major classifications of literature are poetry and prose (which can be further sub-divided into fiction and non-fiction).

Literature may consist of texts based on factual information (journalistic or non-fiction), as well as on original imagination, such as polemical works as well as autobiography, and reflective essays as well as belles-lettres. Literature can be classified according to historical periods, genres, and political influences. The concept of genre, which earlier was limited, has broadened over the centuries. A genre consists of artistic works which fall within a certain central theme, and examples of genre include romance, mystery, crime, fantasy, erotica, and adventure, among others.

Two others are science fiction and horror.

"Literature" is a highly ambiguous term: at its broadest, it can mean any sequence of words that has been preserved for transmission in some form or other (including oral transmission); more narrowly, it is often used to designate imaginative works such as [narrative] stories, poems, and plays; more narrowly still, it is used as an honorific and applied only to those works which are considered to have particular merit.


Main source: Music
Treble Clef Staff
Bass Clef Staff

Treble Clef Notes.JPG Bass Clef Notes 1.JPG

A classical music piece may have movements.

"A movement is a portion of a complete work which is able to stand on its own: it is (usually) separated from the other surrounding movements by a brief silence, (usually) ends with a satisfactory cadence, (usually) has its own distinct set of themes or motifs, has it's own tempo (or set of tempi), may possibly be in a different key from other movements, and, notably, has its own distinct structure."[5]

"The parts (or movements) of a symphony are usually free standing, with one movement ending, a pause, and then the next movement beginning. But the sections, conceived as parts of a whole, somehow relate to one another. The German word for movement is Satz, which means “sentence.” The four movements of a symphony fit together like the four sentences in this paragraph."[6]

"With rare exceptions, the four movements of a symphony conform to a standardized pattern. The first movement is brisk and lively; the second is slower and more lyrical; the third is an energetic minuet (dance) or a boisterous scherzo (“joke”); and the fourth is a rollicking finale"[6]

Apparently, the lengths of movements and the number of movements have varied over several centuries.

There may be vocal and/or instrumental components. Further, the number of instruments is variable as is the number of vocals.

The elements of music consist of notations such as "used to indicate the pitch (how high or low), temporal information (speed or placement in time) and duration (how long) of discrete sounds, [...] Notes are named successively using the first seven letters of the Roman alphabet, i.e. A, B, C, D, E, F, G. [however the musical alphabet is C.D.E.F.G.A.B.C.] [...] The notes are placed on a set of five horizontal lines separated by spaces. This group of five horizontal lines is referred to as a staff or stave. The plural form of either word is staves. The position of the note on the stave is directly related to its pitch."[7]

"Palestrina uses passing tones, suspensions, neighbor notes, and anticipations in decreasing time proportions."[8]


The art work contains color notations or chromatic notations for painting a red-haired man. Credit: Charles Filiger.

"Painting elements, ie brush strokes, that cannot be matched in both views will inhibit stereo fusion and the viewers may experience discomfort. [...] canvases contain multiple refining coarse-to-fine layers of brush strokes that compose the final painting."[9]

Painters search for the right color. To do so they use color notations.[10]

"A painting composition formula which has been found satisfactory for the general purposes [...] contains chlorinated neutral oil or paraffin of chlorine content, 25% chlorinated rubber of preferably 60% to 68% chlorine, 10%; tricresyl phosphate (5%); zinc borate (15%); pigment and filler (25%); and solvent (20%). The proportions of the above formula may be varied and equivalent ingredients may be substituted".[11]


Trematolobelia macrostachys occurs on Mount Ka'ala, O'ahu. Credit: Karl Magnacca.

The Hawaiian lobelioids in the image on the left are a group of flowering plants in the Campanula bellflower family, Campanulaceae, all of which are endemic to the Hawaiian Islands. This is the largest plant radiation in the Hawaiian Islands, and indeed the largest on any island archipelago, with over 125 species.


Gold burial mask is for Pharaoh Psusennes I, discovered 1940 by Pierre Montet. Credit: José-Manuel Benito.{{free media}}
Burial mask is for Pharaoh Amenemope, currently in the Cairo Museum. Credit: tutincommon (John Campana).{{free media}}
This is a statue of Elissa, Queen of Carthage. Credit: Emna Mizouni.{{free media}}

On the right is the burial mask for the Pharaoh Psusennes I exhumed from Tomb III at Tanis (Nile delta). The material used is gold (different pieces were assembled using nails). The eyebrows and eye shadows are lapis lazuli. The eyes are glass paste. There is a cobra on the forehead. The ritual beard is braided to symbolize the death of the sovereign. It is kept in the Egyptian Museum of Cairo. Dynasty is the XXI, dated to c. 1039 BC-990 BC.

In the left image is the burial mask for pharaoh Amenemope of the 21st Dynasty of Egypt, dated to 1001 – 992 BC or 993 – 984 BC.

In the center is an image of the upper portion of a statue of Elissa, Queen of Carthage, apparently from the early 8th century or late ninth century.


The freshers' production was in 2015-16. Credit: Shubham Bansal.{{free media}}


A Navajo blanket was made circa 1880. Credit: Unknown Navajo weaver, pre-1889.

"This blanket [in the image centered] was woven at the end of the "wearing blanket era," just as the railroad came into the Southwest in 1881. The heavier handspun yarns and synthetic dyes are typical of pieces made during the transition from blanket weaving to rug weaving."-Ann Hedlund, Arizona State Museum.



See Also[edit]


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  2. E.B. Karabanov, A.A. Prokopenko, D.F. Williams, and G.K. Khursevich (March 2000). "A new record of Holocene climate change from the bottom sediments of Lake Baikal". Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology 156 (3-4): 211–24. doi:10.1016/S0031-0182(99)00141-8. Retrieved 2014-11-04. 
  3. 3.0 3.1 Lua error in Module:Citation/CS1 at line 3505: bad argument #1 to 'pairs' (table expected, got nil).
  4. Donna Davenport (2006). "Building a Dance Composition Course: An Act of Creativity". Journal of Dance Education 6 (1): 25-32. doi:10.1080/15290824.2006.10387309. Retrieved 2017-09-01. 
  5. Lua error in Module:Citation/CS1 at line 3505: bad argument #1 to 'pairs' (table expected, got nil).
  6. 6.0 6.1 Lua error in Module:Citation/CS1 at line 3505: bad argument #1 to 'pairs' (table expected, got nil).
  7. Lua error in Module:Citation/CS1 at line 3505: bad argument #1 to 'pairs' (table expected, got nil).
  8. Lua error in Module:Citation/CS1 at line 3505: bad argument #1 to 'pairs' (table expected, got nil).
  9. Lua error in Module:Citation/CS1 at line 3505: bad argument #1 to 'pairs' (table expected, got nil).
  10. F Lammertse, A Wallert, M Wolters (2011). M. Spring. ed. In search of the right colour: colour notations in a late sixteenth-century Dutch painting, In: Studying Old Master Paintings. Technology and Practice. London: The National Gallery Technical Bulletin. pp. 111-7.,3. Retrieved 2016-05-02. 
  11. Edwin C Clayton and Lawrence L Heffner (24 May 1938). "Painting and similar composition". United States Patent Office: 1-4. Retrieved 2016-05-02. 

External links[edit]

{{humanities resources}}