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Specifically, the following critical elements must be addressed:

I. Describe the artifact in detail. For instance, how would you describe it to someone who could not see it?

II. Choose elements of the artifact that you believe are most important to how you experience it and explain why. For instance, what particularly catches your senses or makes you want to keep experiencing it? Does the choice of medium impact your experience?

III. State your opinion on what you believe is the purpose of this artifact and the success of the creator in achieving the purpose. For instance, what message do you believe the creator is trying to express, and is that message successfully expressed?

IV. Discuss how the artifact reflects the culture (or context) in which it exists. Be sure to address what aspects of culture have relevance for this artifact: politics, history, religion, social perceptions, technology, media, education, and so on. In other words, how do the artifact and its culture interrelate? For instance, how would a particular form of body modification reflect the urban culture in which you encountered it?

V. Use the artifact to discuss how acts of creative expression impact and are impacted by the people and situations that surround it. How might the artifact and the person who created it have impacted each other? For instance, how might the geographic location where the artifact was made, the materials used to create the artifact, the medium of the creative process, or the environment where the artifact is displayed influence the creator’s life or future creative work? How might the artifact and the culture or context in which it was created have impacted each other? For instance, does the artifact add to the understanding of the culture from which it was created? What contributions does it make to continuing on a dialogue about that culture and the importance of its artifacts?

VI. Pose questions you have after thinking deeply about this artifact. What more do you want to know regarding: a. The relationship between human culture and expression? b. Your personal assumptions about artifacts of this sort and why they exist? c. How your values have shaped and are shaped by your expression and that of others? d. The relationship between the possible intent of the creator and your own interpretation of its meaning?

VII. Speculate on how you would go about answering these questions. For instance, what sorts of things would you study about these kinds of artifacts and their contexts that might begin addressing these questions?


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