2015年12月05日托福阅读真题+题目+答案:Portraits as Art

来源:原创作品 | 2019-10-17491


2015年12月05日托福阅读真题+题目+答案:Portraits as Art

According to the Oxford English Dictionary, portraiture is, "a representation or delineation of a person, especially of the face, made by life, by drawing, painting, photography, engraving... a likeness.” However, this simplistic definition disregards the complexities of portraiture. Portraits are works of art that engage with ideas of identity as they are perceived, represented, and understood in different times and places, rather than simply aim to represent a likeness. These concepts of identity can encompass social hierarchy, gender, age, profession, and the character of the subject, among other things. Rather than being fixed, these features are expressive of the expectations and circumstances of the time when the portrait was made. It is impossible to reproduce the aspects of identity; it is only possible to evoke or suggest them. Consequently, even though portraits represent individuals, it is generally conventional or typical - rather than unique - qualities of subject that are stressed by the artist. Portrait art has also undergone significant shifts in artistic convention and practice. Despite the fact that the majority of portraits portray the subject matter in some amount of verisimilitude, (an appearance of being true or real), they are still the outcome of prevailing artistic fashions and favored styles, techniques, and media. Therefore, portrait art is a vast art category which provides a wide range of engagements with social, psychological, and artistic practices and expectations.

Since portraits are distinct from other genres or art categories in the ways they are produced, the nature of what they represent, and how they function as objects of use and display, they are worthy of separate study. _ First, during their production, portraits require the presence of a specific person, or an image of the individual to be represented, in almost all cases. ■ In the majority of instances,the production of portraiture has necessitated sittings, which result in interaction between the subject(s) and artist throughout the creation of the work. ■ If the sitter is of high social standing or is occupied and unavailable to sit in the studio regularly, portraitists could use photographs or sketches of their subject. ■ In Europe, during the seventeenth and eighteenth century, the sitting time was sometimes decreased by focusing solely on the head and using professional drapery painters to finish the painting. For instance, Sir Peter Lily, the English artist, had a collection of poses in a pattern book that enabled him to focus on the head and require fewer sittings from his aristocratic patrons. Portrait painters could be asked to present the likeness of individuals who were deceased. In this sort of instance, photographs or prints of the subject could be reproduced. Theoretically, portraitists could work from impressions or memories when creating a painting, but this is a rare occurrence according to documented records. Nonetheless, whether the work is based on model sittings, copying a photograph or sketch, or using memory, the process of painting a portrait is closely linked with the implicit or explicit attendance of the model.

Furthermore, portrait painting can be differentiated from other artistic genres like landscape, still life, and history by its connection with appearance, or likeness. As such, the art of portrait painting got a reputation for imitation, or copying, instead of for artistic innovation or creativity; consequently it is sometimes viewed as being of a lower status than the other genres. According to Renaissance art theory, (which prevailed until the start of the nineteenth century) fine art was supposed to represent idealized images, as well as to be original and creative instead of to copy other works. Portraiture, in comparison, became linked with the level of a mechanical exercise as opposed to a fine art. Michelangelo’s well known protest that he would not paint portraits because there were not enough ideally beautiful models is only one example of the dismissive attitude to portraiture that persisted among professional artist - even those who, ironically, made their living from portraiture. In the time of modernism, during the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, the attitude towards portraiture was critical. Even so, artists from around the globe persisted painting portraits in spite of their theoretical objections. Picasso, for instance, became renowned for cubist still-life painting early in his career, but some of his most effective early experiments in this new style were his portraits of art dealers.


1. The word engage in the passage is closest in meaning to

(A) construct

(B) are pleased

(C) are altered

(D) are involved in

2. According to paragraph 1,which of the following gives support of portrait painting's complexity?

(A) Portraits representing faces are more true to life than portraits that portray a whole figure

(B) Portrait art comes in many varieties, which include painting, photography, and drawing

(C) Portraiture tries to portray the most uncommon attributes of a given subject

(D) Portraiture is an interpretation of a subject rather than a copy of it

3. The word prevailing in the passage is closest in meaning to

(A) apparent

(B) distinct

(C) steady

(D) current

4. According to paragraph 1, which of the following best illustrates the development of portrait painting as an art form?

(A) It started as a minor art form, but became progressively more popular

(B) It is a comparatively stable art form due to its fixed subject matter

(C) It has been subjected to consistent and major style shifts

(D) It was the first art form concerned with the identity of the subject

5. Paragraph 2 suggests which of the following differences between portraiture and other types of art?

(A) Portraits portray the subject matter in a more aqcurate manner than other forms of art

(B) Portraits typically take less time to produce than other art forms

(C) Portraits typically necessitate an increased level of personal interaction between the subject matter and artist than other art forms

(D) In opposition to other art forms, portraiture usually necessitates collaboration among several artists

6. In the passage, the word solely is closest in meaning to

(A) only

(B) primarily

(C) particularly

(D) directly

7. The author discusses the “Sir Peter Lily, the English artist,” to provide an example of an artist who

(A) invented a method to reduce the necessary number of sittings for his rich patrons

(B)employed professional drapery painters to help him finish his portraits

(C) concentrated on painting different parts of the subject body at each sitting

(D) had an uncommon range of patrons as subjects

8. All of the following are mentioned in paragraph 2 as techniques employed by artists to create portraits EXCEPT

(A) combining facial traits from different subjects

(B) observing the subjects directly during painting

(C) copying a photograph

(D) recalling what the subject looked like from memory

9. According to paragraph 3,portraiture grew to be regarded as a mechanical practice due to its association with which of the following?

(A) innovation

(B) imitation

(C) perfectionism

(D) creativity

10. What can be inferred from paragraph 3 regarding Michelangelo's view of portraiture?

(A) He felt that imitating and copying were prerequisites of achieving creative portraits.

(B) He thought that portrait artists ought to select subjects from long ago rather than present day.

(C) He felt that portrait art should be viewed as a form of fine art.

(D) He felt that portraits should only portray idealized beauty.

11. The word critical in the passage is closest in meaning to

(A) misunderstanding

(B) fault-finding

(C) ignorant

(D) insignificant

12. In paragraph 3, the author talks about Picasso as an example of an artist who

(A) altered the way other artists felt about portrait art

(B) relied on portrait art to establish a high reputation

(C) had fewer theoretical objections to portraiture than most modern artists

(D) created portraits in spite of his doubts about portraiture as a fine art form

13. Look at the four squares [ ■ ] that indicate where the following sentence could be added to the passage

In certain instances, portrait artists depended pn a combination of direct and indirect involvement with their subjects.

Where would the sentence best fit?

14. Directions: An introductory sentence for a brief summary of the passage is provided below. Complete the summary by selecting the THREE answer choices that express the most important ideas in the passage. Some sentences do not belong in the summary because they express ideas that are not presented in the passage or are minor ideas in the passage. This question is worth 2 points.

Portraiture as an art form is more complex than is suggested by its definition.

(A) The definitions of portrait art in the dictionary have regularly transformed throughout the years to reflect shifting attitudes regarding the genre.

(B) Portrait art should be considered as a distinct artistic genre due to its intense occupation with the subject and the way in which it was produced.

(C) Beginning in the Renaissance and continuing into the start of the nineteenth century, portrait art was idealized to a greater degree than it is in today.

(D) Portraits generally mirror the conventions of the time rather than the unique qualities of the individual.

(E) Throughout history, the majority of professional artists avoided portrait art since they regarded it as a mechanical art form, and not as fine art.

(F) Portrait art was at times viewed in a negative light since it was considered as simple copying void of artistic innovation.




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