Develop a 150–500 word work statement that thoughtfully employs relevant and critical art and design language. This statement should be developed with feedback from your instructor to adjust tone, terminology, and structure. You will use MS Word tracked changes to refine and edit the statement over the duration of the project.
The statement's use of language should seek a balance of accurate technical terminology, concise statements about the work, and language that is accessible to a diverse audience and is wholly descriptive. It is easy for artists and designers to adopt opaque language when attempting to describe abstract works. Developing playful language can be a fun exercise, but has the tendency to confuse or shut out those with-out a strong grasp of obscure and creatively applied vocabulary. There are really no rules with how language is used, but ultimately the goal in a work statement is that the artist or designer can clearly communicate their ideas, processes, and outcomes to a wide audience.
Structure of the work statement
Please write the statement using proper grammar, sentence structure, and with complete paragraphs. Do not include the requirements as sections, the writing should flow as a single description of your project.
- Include your name, project title, and year.
- Explain what the project is and how it works.
- "This project is an online game for children that teaches players living in war-torn countries how to avoid landmines."
- Describe the type of media used and why that choise is effective or interesting.
- Describe the design challenge that your work addresses (the provocation, or existing problem you hope to tackle)
- Do not write about challenges you had in producing the work.
- Describe the process or how you approached solving for the design challenge.
- Describe the impact the work might have, the context in which it sits, why it's interesting, etc.
Statement writing advice
- Moma Art Glossary
- Technical Design Terminology
- Linguistic Glossary
- Critical thinking terms
- Example of a needlessly complex statement and it's translation
- International Art English
- International Disco Latin
- The Guardian: A user's guide to artspeak
The Work Statement is specifically about this project, but artist statements are a helpful analog. These are short, pithy statements that summarize an artist's entire body of work. Good ones minimize "artspeak" (above) in favor of intimate and provocative accompaniments to their work.
Example of Student Work
View a sample work statement (pdf) from a previous student.
- Upload the work statement as an MS Word Document to Canvas as indicated deadlines.