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Art restorers who have been studying the factors that cause Renaissanc

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Re: Art restorers who have been studying the factors that cause Renaissanc  [#permalink]

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New post 28 Dec 2018, 08:27
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Ankita1122 wrote:
Hi there, quick one:

I'm trying to understand why option D is an option anyway? What are they trying to test with that option? Even if they trick you to believe that there is a connection between the gesso used in the frames and the gesso used under the oil paint - why would the qualities of "hard and nonabsorbent type" trick you... Not sure if I am missing something here or if this option is HIGHLY irrelevant... Thanks in advance.


Good question - and actually I love "why is <wrong answer> even an answer anyway?" The more you can do that, the easier these are! I've often found in teaching classes one of the unanticipated challenges is trying to explain certain wrong answers...when there are so many things wrong with them, you don't really want to try to make them "close," you know?

On this one I think there's a "Think Like the Tentmaker" kind of lesson here with D. One reason it's there is that people who don't really get (or take the time to understand) the argument often choose answers that "feel familiar," and an easy way to do that is just to repeat language from the passage. D has "Renaissance," "gesso" - all the important words from the stimulus, so you'll get people who just think on feel that "hey this is really similar to the passage" and pick it, especially if in a rush.

But more interesting to me - take a look at that modifier "which is under the paint" in the conclusion. Without that modifier, I think I'd see one of the gaps in the argument as "hey how do we even know there's gesso in these paintings?" Gesso is first introduced in the conclusion sentence itself, so I could see someone who doesn't take note of that modifier thinking "I want to find an answer that establishes that gesso is in these Renaissance paintings to begin with," and D does do that. Of course, the argument itself has already established that these paintings include gesso, but if you don't see that you're right to be looking for that connection.

And this is something I've seen the testmaker do a fair bit - a trap answer to a strengthen question can restate information you already had (Data Sufficiency does this too), so it definitely feels relevant...it just doesn't add any new value to the argument, so it doesn't strengthen it.
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Re: Art restorers who have been studying the factors that cause Renaissanc  [#permalink]

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New post 07 Apr 2019, 02:27
why does the thickness of the layer of gesso matter? please help.
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Re: Art restorers who have been studying the factors that cause Renaissanc  [#permalink]

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New post 15 Apr 2019, 11:25
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Leonaann wrote:
why does the thickness of the layer of gesso matter? please help.

The restorers hypothesize that "it is a layer of material called gesso, which is under the paint, that causes the deterioration" of Renaissance oil paintings.

To answer the question, we are looking for the answer choice that "most strongly supports" this hypothesis.

Take a look at answer choice (A):
Quote:
(A) Renaissance oil paintings with a thin layer of gesso are less likely to show deterioration in response to climatic changes than those with a thicker layer.

This answer choice tells us that paintings with less gesso (a thinner layer), are less likely to show deterioration. Or, in other words, paintings with more gesso (a thicker layer), are more likely to deteriorate. This information supports the idea that gesso is the culprit causing the paintings to deteriorate, because there is a direct relationship between the amount of gesso used and the deterioration of the painting. (A) is the correct answer.

I hope that helps!
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Re: Art restorers who have been studying the factors that cause Renaissanc  [#permalink]

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New post 15 Jun 2019, 10:25
Hi everyone! I see lots of great responses to questions, so I'm just adding my thoughts here. If for whatever reason you would still like another perspective, my thoughts are below.

Quote:
Art restorers who have been studying the factors that cause Renaissance oil paintings to deteriorate physically when subject to climatic changes have found that the oil paint used in these paintings actually adjusts to these changes well. The restorers therefore hypothesize that it is a layer of material called gesso, which is under the paint, that causes the deterioration.

Which of the following, if true, most strongly supports the restorers’ hypothesis?

(A) Renaissance oil paintings with a thin layer of gesso are less likely to show deterioration in response to climatic changes than those with a thicker layer.
(B) Renaissance oil paintings are often painted on wooden panels, which swell when humidity increases and contract when it declines.
(C) Oil paint expands and contracts readily in response to changes in temperature, but it absorbs little water and so is little affected by changes in humidity.
(D) An especially hard and nonabsorbent type of gesso was the raw material for moldings on the frames of Renaissance oil paintings.
(E) Gesso layers applied by Renaissance painters typically consisted of a coarse base layer onto which several increasingly fine-grained layers were applied.

1. Read and compartmentalize - I read the question first before the stem. I find that by reading the question first, I change the perspective from which I read the passage. If you're a fairly fast reader, I think this is a beneficial way to approach CR and the redundancy of potentially reading the question twice should not make any material difference in time management. Onto the meat - fairly straight forward passage with 2 sentences in the structure of premise followed-up by conclusion.

2. Pre-think when possible - always! The first thing I think of is 'mo Gesso, mo problems'. It's actually the only thing that immediately pops into my head and I don't like to spend time pre-thinking for really more than 10 seconds so I move on to the choices with the questions in mind.

3. Find 4 wrong answers
    (A) Renaissance oil paintings with a thin layer of gesso are less likely to show deterioration in response to climatic changes than those with a thicker layer. - Bingo! This hits the nail on the head right away. It's so spot on with my rethinking that I'm a touch suspect. However, the fact that the Gesso is under the painting and the quantity of gesso is positively correlated with the amount of deterioration confirms the conclusion, which is the restorers' hypothesis.

    (B) Renaissance oil paintings are often painted on wooden panels, which swell when humidity increases and contract when it declines.This does not have any impact on the restorers' hypothesis that the amount of Gesso under a painting is positively correlated to the amount of deterioration exhibited. This answer choice doesn't even touch the topic of deterioration.

    (C) Oil paint expands and contracts readily in response to changes in temperature, but it absorbs little water and so is little affected by changes in humidity. Again, this does not address what gesso has to do with deterioration. Oil paint's sensitivity to temperature changes may be true; however, this activity does not touch on what gesso has to do with deterioration.

    (D) An especially hard and nonabsorbent type of gesso was the raw material for moldings on the frames of Renaissance oil paintings.- The characteristics of gesso here has not been linked to the deterioration of oil paintings. If you were tempted by this answer choice, I think that the chances are that you did not have the conclusion in mind, and were tempted by the similar language of the answer choice. I've found that it's easiest to make a mistake like this when you haven't fully absorbed/understood the passage.

    (E) Gesso layers applied by Renaissance painters typically consisted of a coarse base layer onto which several increasingly fine-grained layers were applied - This may have been a regular practice, but it is not linked to the deterioration of oil paintings. I also realize I now sound like a broken record here =)


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Re: Art restorers who have been studying the factors that cause Renaissanc   [#permalink] 15 Jun 2019, 10:25

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