Monday, September 28, 2015


Perception is the process of acquiring, interpreting, selecting, and organizing sensory information. It is a task far more complex than was imagined. It is a cognitive process which means "receiving, collecting, and action of taking possession, apprehension with the mind or senses. The nature of perception suggests that the most important key to looking at art is to become aware of the process of looking itself. There are two basic theories of perception: Passive Perception and Active Perception.

In passive perception the following sequence of events occur. In your surrounding - input (senses) - processing (brain) - output (re-action). When I sit in my office at times things in the hall don't affect me, or affect me very little. I can concentrate on my work and ignore what is happening. This is passive perception. 

My first art professor stated that it is in this mode that we view most art. These are "Uh-huh" art works. If we can walk by them and go "uh-huh, uh-huh, uh-huh" we are not having a strong reaction. I do not want people to have a "uh-huh reaction to my work. I want them to stop, look at it and think about it. Did you experience a strong reaction to Barney or Condo's work?

The theory of active perception has emerged from extensive research of sensory illusions. This theory is increasingly gaining experimental support and could be surmised as dynamic relationship between “description” (in the brain) - senses - surrounding. You had a strong reaction of some kind. Were you aware that you were looking at the art work?

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