2017 Studio Art 2-D Complete Portfolio Sample

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Use this exemplar to understand portfolio components and requirements.  Analyze features of a successful portfolio to inform teaching and learning.

Help your students identify successful demonstration of ideas and skills in the work shown.  Guide them in connecting the scoring commentary with observable features of work, relating the scoring guidelines to what they see. Discuss ways to create and present art forms that represent high levels of achievement in concept and execution.

Note: With the exception of corrections and clarifications (in brackets), students’ statements are  transcribed exactly.

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Portfolio Score: 5

Score Rationale

  • The work exhibits excellent, well-informed decision-making and intention. The design solution for each work is specific to the concept, with each piece supported by different design elements. Image 3 is structured as a grid, suggesting a film documentation of an event in time. Another piece (image 1) is a digital photo collage of a figure in space, with layered horizontal strips suggesting a disrupted reality.  Emphasis on the face and shoe anchor the figure in space.
  • The composition of the works is original, imaginative and inventive. All works layer visual elements to create complex, unified compositions connect time and space, perception and reality. For example, image 4 creates unity through balance and contrast between two layers and two halves of a composition—a white line drawing over a dark photographic background repeats and reverses the imagery of the background (a brick building juxtaposed with an image of a stone).  
  • The work shows successful engagement with experimentation and risk-taking in all pieces. While all works express dichotomy of a state of being, the visual approach to each piece is different, indicating deep engagement with the subject and experimentation with approach.
  • The work as a whole is confident and evocative; it engages the viewer with visual qualities. For example, image 1 displays nuanced subtlety. Unity is achieved through the flow of the blue hue as it is layered within the sky and through horizontal pieces of the image in a variety of widths.
  • Technical competence of the work is generally excellent; materials and media are used effectively to express ideas. Image 1 creates a visual disruption of reality and perception to suggest hallucination. In image 2, the mixed media collage of the diner booth creates a disruption of time and space to suggest interaction of past and present through memory.

Sustained Investigation Statements

  1. The central idea of my concentration aims to reproduce mental glitches that cause both auditory and visual hallucinations that are associated with Schizophrenia.
  2. According to research, a person who is schizophrenic suffers various hallucinations which can be caused by Genetic disorders, which affect Chromosome 22, and chemical imbalances in the brain. For example, a person who hears voices has a defective Auditory Thalamus. These people perceive reality differently, because of dysfunctional communication within the brain. These miscommunications caused by Chemicals, such as Dopamine and Glutamine imbalances, lead schizophrenics to mistake everyday noises for voices in their heads. This malfunction in the brain, is very similar to a glitch in a computer code.  The imagery I created mimics the malfunction to create new images from the progression of the disease. I have manipulated the photo’s coding, the same way that the genetic disorders manipulate this person’s perception. The first pieces have minor glitches, easy to overlook, such as the first symptoms. As my pieces advance, the glitches become more disorienting and make the original composition hard to distinguish. Eventually, I coded several pictures together, which resembles a person’s inability to decipher what is real.

Score Rationale

  • The topic of the mental glitch as a symptom of schizophrenia is unmistakably and coherently integrated into the digital photo collages.
  • The investigation of the topic provides convincing evidence of informed decision making and discovery. The same conceptual framework is used for all images, but informed decision making is shown by development of unique design solutions using 2-D design elements within each image.
  • The sustained investigation clearly demonstrates an original vision and risk-taking. Original vision is evident in the concept of the visual digital glitch as a metaphor for brain dysfunction. The work demonstrates risk-taking by using photography and digital imaging to recompose images as complex interpretations of hallucination.
  • The evocative and engaging theme of the digital glitch as a metaphor for the physiological glitch of the brain is sustained through all the works.
  • Works show a thorough understanding and effective application of 2-D Design principles. Throughout the portfolio, unity and balance are achieved within the complex, fragmented images through the use of repetition, rhythm, contrast and emphasis. For example, image 7 interweaves added vertical and horizontal shapes/lines into the underlying image to create rhythm that flows intuitively through the space. Image 10 creates emphasis on the figure both by repeating the vibrant orange color (contrasting with the muted blue background) of the figure’s clothing into added geometric elements, and by surrounding the figure with repeated images of airplanes of varying scale and direction.
  • The work conveys a sense of successful transformation and growth. The statement explains that “the malfunction in the brain is very similar to the glitch of the computer code." The work is clearly presented as a chronological progression of the disease, so that “the first pieces have minor glitches, easy to overlook such as the first symptoms. As [the] pieces advance, the glitches become more disorienting," creating more disruption of the original images and more complex compositions.
  • The work is technically excellent; materials and media are used effectively to express ideas. Digital technology is used to create complex, well-composed photo collages. The fragmentation and intersection of imagery within each composition works to visually suggest the disorientation of hallucination that is symptomatic of schizophrenia. 

Score Rationale

  • The work shows good application of 2-D design principles to an acceptable range of design problems (digital photo and mixed media collage, graphic illustration, portraiture). 
  • The work demonstrates a range of original, innovative ideas and effective manipulation of 2-D design elements and principles. Image 2, a mixed media collage, juxtaposes photographic and rendered elements with text on a digitally printed background to suggest interaction of time and space in memory and reality. Visual balance is created by interweaving the background color between heavy and light hues. The strong vertical lines between the color fields are visually disrupted to create the impression of two moments in time intermingling. This is reinforced by the text on either side. Image 6 uses repetition of text and images (from slightly different moments in time within the same space) to create unity of composition while suggesting an ambiguous state of mind. This state of mind is further defined by haziness of the images and the large pink shape obscuring part of the photographic elements.
  • The work demonstrates a variety of intentions or approaches, although not all are successfully articulated. The playing cards are a potentially engaging choice of background in image 8, but they do not successfully support the concept of contrast between nature and the man-made environment. The figure/ground relationship in image 1 is not fully resolved in support of the portrait.
  • Some of the work has discernable evocative or engaging qualities, though confidence is not strongly apparent (image 9); conversely, the work may display confidence but not be engaging (image 5). The relationship between macro and micro, supported by text and representations of pennies and stars, is engaging in image 9. However, the overall composition displays a lack of confidence—the figure/ground relationships are of moderate quality, and compositional emphasis is on the rectangular forms of the panels rather than the content within the panels. The breakdown of compositional space in image 5 displays confidence, but the image is not as engaging. 
  • The work demonstrates good technical competence and use of materials and media (images 2, 3, 4, 6, 7, 10, 11, and 12); technical aspects and articulation of ideas do not always work together (images 1, 5, 8, and 9).