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Proceedings Paper

Sampling of post-Riley visual artists surreptitiously probing perception
Author(s): Scott J. Daly
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Paper Abstract

Attending any conference on visual perception undoubtedly leaves one exposed to the work of Salvador Dali, whose extended phase of work exploring what he dubbed, “the paranoiac-critical method” is very popular as examples of multiple perceptions from conflicting input. While all visual art is intertwined with perceptual science, from convincing three-dimensional illusion during the Renaissance to the isolated visual illusions of Bridget Riley’s Op-Art, direct statements about perception are rarely uttered by the artists in recent times. However, there are still a number of artists working today whose work contains perceptual questions and exemplars that can be of interest to vision scientists and imaging engineers. This talk will start sampling from Op-Art, which is most directly related to psychophysical test stimuli and then will discuss “perceptual installations” from artists such as James Turrell’s, whose focus is often directly on natural light, with no distortions imposed by any capture or display apparatus. His work generally involves installations that use daylight and focus the viewer on its nuanced qualities, such as umbra, air particle interactions, and effects of light adaptation. He is one of the last artists to actively discuss perception. Next we discuss minimal art and electronic art, with video artist Nam June Paik discussing the “intentionally boring” art of minimalism. Another artist using installations is Sandy Skoglund, who creates environments of constant spectral albedo, with the exception of her human occupants. Tom Shannon also uses installations as his media to delve into 3D aspects of depth and perspective, but in an atomized fashion. Beginning with installation concepts, Calvin Collum then adds the restrictive viewpoint of photography to create initially confusing images where the pictorial content and depth features are independent (analogous to the work of Patrick Hughes). Andy Goldsworthy also combines photography with concepts of physical object manipulation inherent in installation, but takes the “installation” out of the gallery into the outdoor natural world. In doing so, he highlights perceptual interactions of scene spectra, color induction, and color constancy. The sculptor Shigeo Fukuda creates intentionally designed multiple-view sculptures, where the perceived subject matter of the sculpture changes with viewing angle. Lastly, Doug Aitken explores the interaction of the functional and emotional aspects of vision.

Paper Details

Date Published: 17 June 2003
PDF: 9 pages
Proc. SPIE 5007, Human Vision and Electronic Imaging VIII, (17 June 2003); doi: 10.1117/12.479666
Show Author Affiliations
Scott J. Daly, Sharp Labs. of America Inc. (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 5007:
Human Vision and Electronic Imaging VIII
Bernice E. Rogowitz; Thrasyvoulos N. Pappas, Editor(s)

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