Skip to main content

Main Area


Can you solve these real 'Jeopardy!' clues about art?

  • Can you solve these real 'Jeopardy!' clues about art?

    In 2018, archaeologists uncovered what is thought to be the oldest piece of art in existence, estimated to be about 73,000 years old, proving once and for all that art existed almost since the beginning of time. The work is simplistic by modern standards—nine red lines of ochre paint on a small piece of stone. But it shows that early humans could draw and intended to create a "visual culture," something researchers didn't formerly know to be true. In fact, this discovery predates the next known piece of art by some 30,000 years.

    Things have changed over the intervening years. Rather than simple lines on a flake of stone, today's art has expanded to include moving pictures, modern dance forms, synthesized beats, and painting techniques those early humans could have never dreamed of. But the purpose of art has remained the same.

    Art has always had an important role in society. It allows people to relay emotions, deliver experiences, inspire others, and start conversations. In short, art's ability to inspire an emotional response in humans makes it one of the building blocks of our society. Considering this important role, Stacker has set out to test your art knowledge.

    Stacker scoured all of the questions memorialized in the J! Archive, as of February 2020, to compile the following list of 25 "Jeopardy!" questions about art. From questions about famous artists of centuries past to distinctive art forms and specific art terms, these questions are sure to stump even the most knowledgeable art critics. Can you guess whose painting inspired the name of the Impressionist movement? Or which medieval painter created the most famous remaining triptych?

    You may also like: Cities doing the most for a clean energy future

  • Clue #1

    - Clue: The full title of this modernist Stravinsky ballet includes "Pictures from Pagan Russia in Two Parts."
    - Category: ARTS
    - Value: $1600
    - Date episode aired: Nov. 23, 2016

  • Answer #1: What is 'The Rite of Spring?'

    When Stravinsky's "The Rite of Spring" ballet premiered on May 29, 1913, at the Théâtre des Champs-Elysées in Paris, a riot nearly broke out amongst the audience members. Attendees didn't appreciate the loud music, outrageous costumes, bizarre choreography, and pagan sacrifice storyline, and responded with an overwhelming din of boos. To prevent a full-blown protest, Stravinsky's collaborator, Serge Diaghilev, repeatedly flashed the house lights to keep the audience in their seats.

  • Clue #2

    - Clue: This modern American artist was known as the "Father of the Mobile."
    - Category: AMERICAN ARTISTS
    - Value: $400
    - Date episode aired: April 9, 2015

  • Answer #2: Who is Alexander Calder?

    Born into an artistic family in 1898, Alexander Calder began creating at an early age. Still, he wasn't always sure that becoming an artist himself was in the cards. It wasn't until years after graduating from the Stevens Institute of Technology with an engineering degree that Calder decided to take up the family industry. Today, several of his most famous pieces like "Cirque Calder" and "Lobster Trap and Fish Tail" hang in museums like the Whitney and the Museum of Modern Art in New York. 

  • Clue #3

    - Clue: In May 2010, five paintings worth $125 million by Braque, Matisse, and three others left Paris' museum of this art period.
    - Category: THE ART OF THE STEAL
    - Value: $1600
    - Date episode aired: Feb. 15, 2011

    You may also like: Most popular baby names for boys the year you were born

  • Answer #3: What is modern art?

    Modern art was inspired by the rapid changes brought on by the Industrial Revolution, as well as a new desire in artists to create works designed by their own experiences and on topics they chose. This represented a significant break in tradition—previously, the vast majority of the art created was commissioned either by the church or by wealthy patrons. The Museum of Modern Art in New York City, which holds the world's largest collection of modern and contemporary art, only collects works that were made after 1880.

    [Pictured: "The Red Room" by Henri Matisse.]

  • Clue #4

    - Clue: A violinist, not an archer, Giuseppe Tartini helped establish the modern style of using this.
    - Category: A HISTORY OF VIOLINS
    - Value: $800
    - Date episode aired: Oct. 16, 2009

  • Answer #4: What is a bow?

    Giuseppe Tartini was intended for a monastic career, but his love for music and secret marriage to the bishop of Padua's niece put an end to that career trajectory for the artist. Instead, Tartini studied under some of the most reputable musicians of the time, including Bohuslav Cernohorsky and Francesco Veracini. After withdrawing from public life for a period of focused, individual study, Tartini re-emerged with a longer, thicker bow and principles of handling it that are now used in every violin school around the world.

  • Clue #5

    - Clue: An old-timey central European, or a modern artsy type.
    - Category: "BO" POURRI
    - Value: $600
    - Date episode aired: March 12, 2009

  • Answer #5: What is a Bohemian?

    Once, the world Bohemian was used to describe certain groups of people from the Bohemia region of the Czech Republic, but the definition has since shifted to describe an entirely different kind of person. In 1932, the "Dictionnaire de l'Académie Française" described a Bohemian as "one who lives a vagabond, unregimented life without assured resources, who does not worry about tomorrow." In 1851, Henri Murger's "La Vie de Boheme" or "Scenes of a Bohemian Life" helped to further define to a much wider audience the new meaning of the word.

    [Pictured: Illustration from "Scènes de la vie de bohème" by Henri Murger.]

    You may also like: U.S. Air Force by the numbers

2018 All rights reserved.