Discussion Questions: Joan Brown’s, After the Alcatraz Swim #1

Joan Brown, After the Alcatraz Swim #1, 1975; promised gift of Maryellen and Frank Herringer; © Estate of Joan Brown

  1. Look at this painting for a while. What do you notice first? Why do you think you noticed what you did?
  2. What do you think is the most important part of this painting? What do you see that makes you think that?
  3. What’s going on in the small painting within this large painting? What do you see that makes you say that?
  4. This is a self-portrait of Joan Brown, the artist, who was a swimmer. The title of this work is After the Alcatraz Swim. How does knowing the title change the way you look at or understand this work?
  5. If you were going to paint a picture of yourself that showed your hobby or favorite activity, what would it look like?

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