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VCE Art and Design

Art Unit 1: Artworks, Experience and Meaning

Elective Unit


There are no prerequisites for this unit, however it is recommended that students have studied Year 10 Art.

Course Description

In Year 11 students will study Unit 1 Art and Unit 2 Studio Arts as preparation for the study of either Art or Studio Arts in Year 12.

This unit focusses on realising ideas through the exploration of techniques, inter-media and cross-media investigation. Students are introduced to skills and concepts, both practical and theoretical, through a process of investigation and discussion of how the structural aesthetic qualities, materials and techniques communicate meaning. They explore the work of artists who have been inspired by ideas relating to personal and cultural identity through thematic topics. Students should complete Unit 1 Art before studying Unit 2 Studio Arts in Semester 2.

Areas of Study

Art Making and Personal Meaning

Students are encouraged to develop and apply skills while exploring areas of individual interest to create artworks. Students undertake a range of experiences that offer different ways of working and use the Structural and the Personal Framework to analyse the formal qualities of their artworks.

Students explore the following areas:

  • Qualities and characteristics of materials, techniques and working methods involving artistic research, innovation and cross-media exploration.
  • The meaning of visual language to explore issues and ideas of personal interest and imagination.
  • Art language for the purpose of documentation and annotation.
  • A range of concepts, styles and selected images.
  • Methods of exploring visual solutions to set tasks.

Art and Meaning

Students are introduced to the concept of Analytical Frameworks to support the interpretation of the meanings and messages of artworks, both as intended by the artist and as interpreted by the viewer. They gain an understanding that the art may reflect the artist's interest, experiences and thinking, through applying the Personal Framework and Structural Framework to read possible meanings of the artwork.

Students research and investigate the following:

  • Social and personal interests, experience and intentions of artists.
  • Factors that influence responses to artworks.
  • Discussion of artworks in order to identify particular social issues and/or themes.
  • Visual analysis of artworks through application of analytical frameworks.
  • Research using a range of resources to support discussions of the cultural contexts, functions and social settings of art.


Assessment Tasks
(school-assessed tasks)

Present visual solutions to set tasks through experimentation with a range of materials and cross-media techniques and processes, in a particular media and/or art form.

A body of visual solutions developed through an explorative approach to skills, techniques and materials developed within a Visual Art Diary and finished artworks.

Analyse and interpret a variety of artworks using the Analytical Frameworks to support the interpretation of meanings and messages of artworks.

Written reports and essays.

Short-answer responses supported by visual references.

Overall Final Assessment

End of Semester Examination – 1.5 hours.

Information can be obtained from the Victorian Curriculum and Assessment Authority, Victoria, Australia: