Making Connections in Art History

Editor’s Note: The following post is an assignment from the La Salle faculty training course Collaboration Online Plus. In this assignment, course participants are tasked with redesigning an face-to-face lesson for the online environment. Please show support to your fellow Lasallians by leaving your feedback on their ideas in the comments section below this post.

Making Connections in Art History

Instructions: Below are six paintings that were made by diverse artists at different time periods. The paintings and the artists who made them have various relationships to one another. Students should attempt to identify the many interrelationships between the images.

Notes: You can make relationships between 2 or more images (not necessarily the ones paired next to one another). Think in terms of form, style, content, and context.





Join the Conversation


  1. Interesting choice of pictures. How would students present their connections in the online forum?

    1. In a synchronous session I was thinking the students would chime in with their initial observations either via chat or voice. Another way though might be to post this in advance, have students write down connections prior to the synchronous session and then when we meet to discuss as a group.

  2. Is this meant to be an individual assignment or a synchronous one? Would you want the students to discuss the paintings and come up with answers after having discussions, or would you want them to present their own ideas in another way? The paintings are all very unique. I like the idea behind the assignment.

    1. Great question. I think it can be done in both ways,but my initial thought was synchronous in order to get students’ initial observations and to focus on visual analysis skills.

  3. I think this is a great way to get students to consider relationships between works that they would never consider on their own. It seems to push them to really look at the works more carefully. I wonder if as a related assignment students might try to add works from the text to the six painting group? or try to arrange a group on their own?

  4. Mey-Yen:

    This looks like an adaptation of the white board assignment from this week’s information. White Boards “allow students to connect two or more concepts and see the interrelationship between seemingly unrelated items”. I was drawn to making a connection with the paintings. I look at them and see the imagery of revolution on multiple levels (even rebellion in what art should/ should not be). Of course the final image (which I think may be a Bansky) stirs different emotion because the revolution is against America and the majority of Americans view it as terrorism. Thanks for sharing.



  5. I love this assignment, and it makes me wish I had taken some art history classes. I’m wondering where in the course this assignment would fall (partially out of self-interest for my own material!). I mean, would this be near the beginning of the course so as to get them thinking about art, the middle, where they would have some critical tools to apply, or a more fully-fledged assignment near the end of the course?

    1. I was thinking of maybe using something like this at the beginning to introduce students to some key themes, terms, etc. and then again at the end of a course or unit when they can apply their knowledge that they have learned. I also liked Brian’s comment about having students then create their own groups of artwork.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *