How to Write a Good Art Critique: 20 Questions and Answers

Are you speechless when it comes to writing an art critique? Don’t worry. Many students can’t find the words to speak about art.

And it gets only worse when you need to write about it.

An optimal solution is here. These 20 questions and sample answers will give you a clue how to critique artwork like a pro.

The Four Steps of Art Criticism

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Art criticism is much more than simply saying ‘like’ or ‘hate’ it. You’ll need to take a close look at the artwork and give arguments to defend your opinion. The following time-proven scheme usually works well:

The Four Steps of Art Criticism.

Follow this scheme and amazing things will happen. Your art critique will grow line by line in your document only to amuse your teacher and bring you a good grade as a result.

The Art of Writing Art Critique in 20 Questions

To make these four steps, you simply need to ask yourself the right questions. For instance, here’s what it might look like:


  1. What is the title and why is this artwork special?
    Venus de Milo, one of a few remaining ancient Greek sculptures, is the most recognizable antiquity in the world.
  2. Who is the author?
    It is now attributed to Alexandros of Antioch, but earlier it was mistakenly thought to be the work of Praxiteles.
  3. When and how was it created?
    Venus de Milo was created between 130 and 100 BC and when it was discovered in 1820 by a French peasant, the sculpture was broken into two pieces and armless.
  4. Where can it be found?
    Venus de Milo is exhibited at the Louvre Museum.
  5. What does it look like?
    The armless marble statue of Aphrodite, the goddess of love and beauty, is a little larger than the life size.


  1. What element catches your eye first?
    The most intriguing part of the sculpture is the absent arms, which give food for thought.
  2. What else seems important if you keep looking?
    Another important thing about this statue is its natural curves which are far from modern unhealthy standards of beauty.
  3. Why are these elements important?
    These two elements make this statue mysterious and down to earth at the same time.
  4. How are these elements connected?
    The absent arms give space for imagination, whereas the natural forms return the audience to reality.
  5. How is the contrast used?
    The contrast between the divine nature of this sculpture and its down-to-earth elements make us think about how complex our own nature is.


  1. What mood does it create?
    Looking at this sculpture creates the mood of inner peace and harmony.
  2. What does it make you think about?
    Venus de Milo makes me think of how our life is short, while true art is long.
  3. What other title would you give it and why?
    Another title I would give this artwork is “The complexity of a human soul”.
  4. Does it remind you of other things?
    This sculpture reminds me the ancient myth of Pygmalion in which a sculpture becomes alive.
  5. How does it relate to other ideas or events?
    Venus de Milo, combining the divine and earth traits, looks like Galatea which came to life.


  1. What qualities make this work a success or a failure?
    Along with the fact that this statue is one of a few remaining Greek classic statues, Venus is impressive in its natural beauty.
  2. Would you change something about this work?
    This statue might look more complete if it had its arms. However, this detail makes it mysterious and special and I wouldn’t change a thing about this artwork.
  3. What’s your most (least) favorite thing about this work?
    The natural proportions and variety of possible interpretations are what I love most about Venus de Milo.
  4. Was the artist successful in achieving the goal?
    The popularity of the statue centuries after it was created perfectly shows how successful was the artist in achieving his goal.
  5. Can it be compared to other similar works?
    Even though Venus de Milo might have been only one in a series of similar artworks, nowadays it’s one of a few remaining statues in this style.

Useful Words to Write Art Critique

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If none of these questions helps, you can always use this empty phrase generator for art critiques.

So, if you need some empty fillers to make your paper longer, don’t hesitate to use this tool.

Do you know an easier way to critique artwork? Please, kindly share!

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