Comparing and Contrasting Two Artworks

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About this sample

About this sample


Words: 591 |

Page: 1|

3 min read

Published: Jan 30, 2024

Words: 591|Page: 1|3 min read

Published: Jan 30, 2024

Table of contents

  1. Overview of Artwork A
  2. Overview of Artwork B
  3. Comparison of Artwork A and B
  4. Contrast of Artwork A and B
  5. Conclusion
  6. References

Art history research paper is an essential part of every art student's academic curriculum. The study of ancient and contemporary artworks allows students to gain a deeper understanding of different artistic styles, techniques, and cultural influences. This essay aims to compare and contrast two iconic artworks and analyze their stylistic features, historical background, and cultural impact. The artworks to be examined are Vincent van Gogh's "Starry Night" and Edvard Munch's "The Scream".

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Overview of Artwork A

Vincent van Gogh's "Starry Night" is a renowned oil painting created in 1889. The artwork depicts a magnificent night sky with swirling stars, a crescent moon, and a small village overshadowed by dark cypress trees. The painting was created during van Gogh's stay at the Saint-Paul-de-Mausole asylum in France, where he sought treatment for mental illness. The intense, swirling brushstrokes and vibrant colors evoke a sense of emotional turmoil and introspection. The painting's inspiration may have been linked to van Gogh's fascination with astronomy and his personal struggle with mental illness.

Overview of Artwork B

"The Scream" is a painting by Norwegian artist Edvard Munch, created in 1893. The artwork depicts a figure with an agonized expression set against a swirling orange sky. The painting is widely regarded as a symbol of existential angst and despair. Munch drew inspiration from his personal experiences of anxiety and depression, as well as from his exposure to the political and social upheavals of the late 19th century. Munch's distinctive style, characterized by bold, sweeping brushstrokes and intense colors, is evident in this artwork, which has become an iconic image of human suffering and alienation.

Comparison of Artwork A and B

Despite the differences in subject matter and color scheme, "Starry Night" and "The Scream" share some similarities in terms of artistic style and cultural background. Both artworks were created during the late 19th century, a time of significant social and artistic change. The artists of this period were interested in exploring the inner world of human emotions and the mysteries of nature. They also experimented with new techniques such as impasto, a thick application of paint that creates a textured surface. Both van Gogh and Munch used this technique to create a sense of movement and energy in their paintings.

Contrast of Artwork A and B

Despite the similarities, "Starry Night" and "The Scream" have significant differences in terms of their artistic style, cultural background, and emotional impact. "Starry Night" is characterized by a dreamy, fantastical quality, with swirling stars and intense, contrasting colors. In contrast, "The Scream" has a more ominous, threatening atmosphere, with a tortured figure and a chaotic background. Munch's painting expresses a sense of existential dread and the futility of human existence, while van Gogh's artwork celebrates the beauty and wonder of nature.

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In conclusion, the comparison and contrast of Vincent van Gogh's "Starry Night" and Edvard Munch's "The Scream" have revealed significant differences and similarities in terms of their historical context, artistic style, and cultural impact. The two artworks are representative of the late 19th century's interest in exploring the inner world of human emotions and the mysteries of nature. However, van Gogh's painting has a more positive, uplifting tone and celebrates the beauty and wonder of nature, while Munch's artwork expresses a sense of existential angst and despair. Overall, these artworks remain relevant and significant in the history of art and continue to inspire new generations of artists and art enthusiasts.


  1. Van Gogh Museum. (n.d.). Vincent van Gogh - The Paintings - Starry Night. Retrieved September 24, 2021, from
  2. National Gallery. (n.d.). Edvard Munch: The Scream. Retrieved September 24, 2021, from
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This essay was reviewed by
Dr. Charlotte Jacobson

Cite this Essay

Comparing and Contrasting Two Artworks. (2024, January 30). GradesFixer. Retrieved April 14, 2024, from
“Comparing and Contrasting Two Artworks.” GradesFixer, 30 Jan. 2024,
Comparing and Contrasting Two Artworks. [online]. Available at: <> [Accessed 14 Apr. 2024].
Comparing and Contrasting Two Artworks [Internet]. GradesFixer. 2024 Jan 30 [cited 2024 Apr 14]. Available from:
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