Looking into Pictures: An Interdisciplinary Approach to Pictorial Space

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Overview

The last half of the twentieth century witnessed dramatic changes in the theory of vision. In particular, the "eye-as-camera" metaphor that had long dominated the field no longer seemed tenable. Somewhat surprisingly, however, the metaphor has maintained its appeal in the study of pictures. In Looking into Pictures, philosophers, psychologists, and art historians explore the implications of recent theories of vision for our understanding of the nature of pictorial representation and picture perception. They examine the dual nature of picture perception, the fact that viewers must separate the visual properties of the picture itself from those of what the picture represents. Discussing the status of perspective, they ask whether perspective renderings of space are special or more accurate than those found in other types of pictures, and if so why. Finally, they consider the possible need to reconceive pictorial space and the implications of such a reconception for the study of picture perception.

The MIT Press

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780262083102
  • Publisher: MIT Press
  • Publication date: 6/1/2003
  • Series: Bradford Books Series
  • Pages: 435
  • Product dimensions: 7.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 1.25 (d)

Meet the Author

Heiko Hecht is Research Fellow at the Man-Vehicle Lab, Massachusetts Institute of
Technology.

Robert Schwartz is Professor of Philosophy at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. He is the author of Vision: Variations on Some Berkeleian Themes and other books. He is a coeditor of Looking into Pictures: Reconceiving Pictorial Space (MIT Press,
2003).

Margaret Atherton is Professor of Philosophy at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments
Introduction
Pt. I The Dual Nature of Picture Reception 1
Ch. 1 In Defense of Seeing-In 3
Ch. 2 Conjoint Representations and the Mental Capacity for Multiple Simultaneous Perspectives 17
Ch. 3 Relating Direct and Indirect Perception of Spatial Layout 61
Ch. 4 The Dual Nature of Picture Perception: A Challenge to Current General Accounts of Visual Perception 77
Ch. 5 Perceptual Strategies and Pictorial Content 99
Pt. II The Status of Perspective 123
Ch. 6 Optical Laws or Symbolic Rules? The Dual Nature of Pictorial Systems 125
Ch. 7 Perspective, Convention, and Compromise 145
Ch. 8 Resemblance Reconceived 167
Ch. 9 What You See Is What You Get: The Problems of Linear Perspective 179
Ch. 10 Pictures of Perspective: Theory or Therapy? 191
Pt. III The Nature and Structure of Reconceived Pictorial Space 213
Ch. 11 Reconceiving Perceptual Space 215
Ch. 12 Pictorial Space 239
Ch. 13 Truth and Meaning in Pictorial Space 301
Ch. 14 Line and Borders of Surfaces: Grouping and Foreshortening 321
Ch. 15 Irreconcilable Views 355
References 379
Contributors 405
Index 407
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