Reductionism in Art and Brain Science

Bridging the Two Cultures

Author: Eric Kandel

Publisher: Columbia University Press

ISBN: 0231542089

Category: Science

Page: 224

View: 2826

Are art and science separated by an unbridgeable divide? Can they find common ground? In this new book, neuroscientist Eric R. Kandel, whose remarkable scientific career and deep interest in art give him a unique perspective, demonstrates how science can inform the way we experience a work of art and seek to understand its meaning. Kandel illustrates how reductionism—the distillation of larger scientific or aesthetic concepts into smaller, more tractable components—has been used by scientists and artists alike to pursue their respective truths. He draws on his Nobel Prize-winning work revealing the neurobiological underpinnings of learning and memory in sea slugs to shed light on the complex workings of the mental processes of higher animals. In Reductionism in Art and Brain Science, Kandel shows how this radically reductionist approach, applied to the most complex puzzle of our time—the brain—has been employed by modern artists who distill their subjective world into color, form, and light. Kandel demonstrates through bottom-up sensory and top-down cognitive functions how science can explore the complexities of human perception and help us to perceive, appreciate, and understand great works of art. At the heart of the book is an elegant elucidation of the contribution of reductionism to the evolution of modern art and its role in a monumental shift in artistic perspective. Reductionism steered the transition from figurative art to the first explorations of abstract art reflected in the works of Turner, Monet, Kandinsky, Schoenberg, and Mondrian. Kandel explains how, in the postwar era, Pollock, de Kooning, Rothko, Louis, Turrell, and Flavin used a reductionist approach to arrive at their abstract expressionism and how Katz, Warhol, Close, and Sandback built upon the advances of the New York School to reimagine figurative and minimal art. Featuring captivating drawings of the brain alongside full-color reproductions of modern art masterpieces, this book draws out the common concerns of science and art and how they illuminate each other.
Posted in Science

The Age of Insight

The Quest to Understand the Unconscious in Art, Mind, and Brain, from Vienna 1900 to the Present

Author: Eric R. Kandel

Publisher: Random House Incorporated

ISBN: 1400068711

Category: Psychology

Page: 636

View: 1454

A Nobel Prize-winning neuroscientist and author of In Search of Memory documents the work of five leading minds including Sigmund Freud and Gustave Klimt in 1900 Vienna, revealing how their critical breakthroughs in science, medicine and art laid the groundwork for present-day discoveries in brain science.
Posted in Psychology

The Disordered Mind

What Unusual Brains Tell Us About Ourselves

Author: Eric R. Kandel

Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux

ISBN: 0374716102

Category: Science

Page: 304

View: 6094

Eric R. Kandel, the winner of the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for his foundational research into memory storage in the brain, is one of the pioneers of modern brain science. His work continues to shape our understanding of how learning and memory work and to break down age-old barriers between the sciences and the arts. In his seminal new book, The Disordered Mind, Kandel draws on a lifetime of pathbreaking research and the work of many other leading neuroscientists to take us on an unusual tour of the brain. He confronts one of the most difficult questions we face: How does our mind, our individual sense of self, emerge from the physical matter of the brain? The brain’s 86 billion neurons communicate with one another through very precise connections. But sometimes those connections are disrupted. The brain processes that give rise to our mind can become disordered, resulting in diseases such as autism, depression, schizophrenia, Parkinson’s, addiction, and post-traumatic stress disorder. While these disruptions bring great suffering, they can also reveal the mysteries of how the brain produces our most fundamental experiences and capabilities—the very nature of what it means to be human. Studies of autism illuminate the neurological foundations of our social instincts; research into depression offers important insights on emotions and the integrity of the self; and paradigm-shifting work on addiction has led to a new understanding of the relationship between pleasure and willpower. By studying disruptions to typical brain functioning and exploring their potential treatments, we will deepen our understanding of thought, feeling, behavior, memory, and creativity. Only then can we grapple with the big question of how billions of neurons generate consciousness itself.
Posted in Science

The Aesthetic Brain

How We Evolved to Desire Beauty and Enjoy Art

Author: Anjan Chatterjee

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0199811806

Category: Psychology

Page: 217

View: 4056

The Aesthetic Brain takes the reader on a wide-ranging journey addressing fundamental questions about aesthetics and art. Using neuroscience and evolutionary psychology, Chatterjee shows how beauty, pleasure, and art are grounded biologically, and offers explanations for why beauty, pleasure, and art exist at all.
Posted in Psychology

Art and the Brain

Plasticity, Embodiment, and the Unclosed Circle

Author: Amy Ione

Publisher: BRILL

ISBN: 900432299X

Category: Art

Page: 380

View: 9049

In her new book Art and the Brain: Plasticity, Embodiment and the Unclosed Circle, Amy Ione offers a profound assessment of our ever-evolving view of the biological brain as it pertains to embodied human experience.
Posted in Art

Eye and Brain

The Psychology of Seeing

Author: Richard L. Gregory

Publisher: Princeton University Press

ISBN: 1400866863

Category: Science

Page: 288

View: 9287

Since the publication of the first edition in 1966, Eye and Brain has established itself worldwide as an essential introduction to the basic phenomena of visual perception. Richard Gregory offers clear explanations of how we see brightness, movement, color, and objects, and he explores the phenomena of visual illusions to establish principles about how perception normally works and why it sometimes fails. Illusion continues to be a major theme in the book, which provides a comprehensive classification system. There are also sections on what babies see and how they learn to see, on motion perception, the relationship between vision and consciousness, and on the impact of new brain imaging techniques.
Posted in Science

Art and the Brain II

Investigations Into the Science of Art

Author: Joseph A. Goguen,Erik Myin

Publisher: Imprint Academic

ISBN: 9780907845126

Category: Art

Page: 160

View: 3954

The first volume in this series addressed neurological and evolutionary theories of aesthetics. Some of the authors in this second volume extend the debate by seeking a basis for aesthetic appeal in mathematics and physics. Richard Taylor and his colleagues subjected Jackson Pollock's drip paintings to fractal analysis, and concluded that they are a direct expression of the generic imagery of nature's scenery. Taken with Chris McManus's discovery that the proportions in Mondrian's paintings reflect the 'golden section', this leads us to ask whether science can help predict what human subjects will find attractive, or whether such an approach undervalues the cultural elements in aesthetic appreciation? The book also includes explorations of the philosophical foundations of the aesthetic experience, and some further experimental studies.
Posted in Art

Art and the Brain

Author: Joseph Goguen

Publisher: Imprint Academic

ISBN: 9780907845454

Category: Art

Page: 208

View: 2034

A three-volume series of the "Journal of Consciousness Studies", which asks if it is possible to take a natural science approach to art and uncover general laws of aesthetic experience, or is that taking reductionism too far?
Posted in Art

How Art Works

A Psychological Exploration

Author: Ellen Winner

Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA

ISBN: 0190863358

Category: Art

Page: 320

View: 5387

There is no end of talk and of wondering about 'art' and 'the arts.' This book examines a number of questions about the arts (broadly defined to include all of the arts). Some of these questions come from philosophy. Examples include: · What makes something art? · Can anything be art? · Do we experience "real" emotions from the arts? · Why do we seek out and even cherish sorrow and fear from art when we go out of our way to avoid these very emotions in real life? · How do we decide what is good art? Do aesthetic judgments have any objective truth value? · Why do we devalue fakes even if we -- indeed, even the experts--- can't tell them apart from originals? · Does fiction enhance our empathy and understanding of others? Is art-making therapeutic? Others are "common sense" questions that laypersons wonder about. Examples include: · Does learning to play music raise a child's IQ? · Is modern art something my kid could do? · Is talent a matter of nature or nurture? This book examines puzzles about the arts wherever their provenance - as long as there is empirical research using the methods of social science (interviews, experimentation, data collection, statistical analysis) that can shed light on these questions. The examined research reveals how ordinary people think about these questions, and why they think the way they do - an inquiry referred to as intuitive aesthetics. The book shows how psychological research on the arts has shed light on and often offered surprising answers to such questions.
Posted in Art

Inner Vision

An Exploration of Art and the Brain

Author: Semir Zeki

Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA

ISBN: 9780198505198

Category: Philosophy

Page: 224

View: 6884

Beautifully illustrated and vividly written, "Inner Vision" explores how different areas of the brain shape responses to visual arts. 84 color illustrations. 8 halftones. 30 line illustrations.
Posted in Philosophy

Psychiatry, Psychoanalysis, and the New Biology of Mind

Author: Eric R. Kandel

Publisher: American Psychiatric Pub

ISBN: 9781585626847

Category: Medical

Page: 440

View: 9487

Brought together for the first time in a single volume, these eight important and fascinating essays by Nobel Prize-winning psychiatrist Eric Kandel provide a breakthrough perspective on how biology has influenced modern psychiatric thought. Complete with commentaries by experts in the field, Psychiatry, Psychoanalysis, and the New Biology of Mind reflects the author's evolving view of how biology has revolutionized psychiatry and psychology and how potentially could alter modern psychoanalytic thought. The author's unique perspective on both psychoanalysis and biological research has led to breakthroughs in our thinking about neurobiology, psychiatry, and psychoanalysis -- all driven by the central idea that a fuller understanding of the biological processes of learning and memory can illuminate our understanding of behavior and its disorders. These wonderful essays cover the mechanisms of psychotherapy and medications, showing that both work at the same level of neural circuits and synapses, and the implications of neurobiological research for psychotherapy; the ability to detect functional changes in the brain after psychotherapy, which enables us, for the first time, to objectively evaluate the effects of psychotherapy on individual patients; the need for animal models of mental disorders; for example, learned fear, to show how molecules and cellular mechanisms for learning and memory can be combined in various ways to produce a range of adaptive and maladaptive behaviors; the unification of behavioral psychology, cognitive psychology, neuroscience, and molecular biology into the new science of the mind, charted in two seminal reports on neurobiology and molecular biology given in 1983 and 2000; the critical role of synapses and synaptic strength in both short- and long-term learning; the biological and social implications of the mapping of the human genome for medicine in general and for psychiatry and mental health in particular; The author concludes by calling for a revolution in psychiatry, one that can use the power of biology and cognitive psychology to treat the many mentally ill persons who do not benefit from drug therapy. Fascinating reading for psychiatrists, psychoanalysts, social workers, residents in psychiatry, and trainees in psychoanalysis, Psychiatry, Psychoanalysis, and the New Biology of Mind records with elegant precision the monumental changes taking place in psychiatric thinking. It is an invaluable reference work and a treasured resource for thinking about the future.
Posted in Medical

Experiencing Art

In the Brain of the Beholder

Author: Arthur Shimamura

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0199791538

Category: Psychology

Page: 312

View: 8440

How do we appreciate a work of art? Why do we like some artworks but not others? Is there no accounting for taste? Awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship to explore connections between art, mind, and brain, Shimamura considers how we experience art. In a thoughtful and entertaining manner, the book explores how the brain interprets art by engaging our sensations, thoughts, and emotions. It describes interesting findings from psychological and brain sciences as a way to understand our aesthetic response to art. Beauty, disgust, surprise, anger, sadness, horror, and a myriad of other emotions can occur as we experience art. Some artworks may generate such feelings rather quickly, while others depend on thought and knowledge. Our response to art depends largely on what we know--from everyday knowledge about the world, from our cultural backgrounds, and from personal experience. Filled with artworks from many traditions and time points, "Experiencing Art" offers insightful ways of broadening one's approach and appreciation of art.
Posted in Psychology

In Search of Memory: The Emergence of a New Science of Mind

Author: Eric R. Kandel

Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company

ISBN: 9780393070514

Category: Psychology

Page: 528

View: 6951

“A stunning book.”—Oliver Sacks Memory binds our mental life together. We are who we are in large part because of what we learn and remember. But how does the brain create memories? Nobel Prize winner Eric R. Kandel intertwines the intellectual history of the powerful new science of the mind—a combination of cognitive psychology, neuroscience, and molecular biology—with his own personal quest to understand memory. A deft mixture of memoir and history, modern biology and behavior, In Search of Memory brings readers from Kandel's childhood in Nazi-occupied Vienna to the forefront of one of the great scientific endeavors of the twentieth century: the search for the biological basis of memory.
Posted in Psychology

Cognitive Iconology

When and How Psychology Explains Images

Author: Ian Verstegen

Publisher: Rodopi

ISBN: 9401210705

Category: Art

Page: 194

View: 6881

Cognitive Iconology is a new theory of the relation of psychology to art. Instead of being an application of psychological principles, it is a methodologically aware account of psychology, art and the nature of explanation. Rather than fight over biology or culture, it shows how they must fit together. The term “cognitive iconology” is meant to mirror other disciplines like cognitive poetics and musicology but the fear that images must be somehow transparent to understanding is calmed by the stratified approach to explanation that is outlined. In the book, cognitive iconology is a theory of cognitive tendencies that contribute to but are not determinative of an artistic meaning. At the center of the book are three case studies: images depicted within images, basic corrections to architectural renderings in images, and murals and paintings seen from the side. In all cases, there is a primitive perceptual pull that contribute to but do not override larger cultural meaning. The book then moves beyond the confines of the image to behavior around the image, and then ends with the concluding question of why some images are harder to understand than others. Cognitive Iconology promises to be important because it moves beyond the turf battles typically fought in image studies. It argues for a sustainable practice of interpretation that can live with other disciplines. Ian Verstegen is an art writer and historian living in Philadelphia. He is the author of Arnheim, Gestalt and Art (2005) and A Realist Theory of Art History (2012).
Posted in Art

Art, Aesthetics, and the Brain

Author: Joseph P. Huston,Marcos Nadal,Mora Teruel Mora,Luigi Francesco Agnati,Camilo José Cela Conde

Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA

ISBN: 0199670005

Category: Aesthetics

Page: 545

View: 8208

Humans have engaged in artistic and aesthetic activities since the appearance of our species. Our ancestors have decorated their bodies, tools, and utensils for over 100,000 years. The expression of meaning using color, line, sound, rhythm, or movement, among other means, constitutes a fundamental aspect of our species' biological and cultural heritage. Art and aesthetics, therefore, contribute to our species identity and distinguish it from its living and extinctrelatives. This volume brings together the work on such questions by leading experts in genetics, psychology, neuroimaging, neuropsychology, art history, and philosophy. It sets the stagefor a cognitive neuroscience of art and aesthetics, understood in the broadest possible terms. With sections on visual art, dance, music, neuropsychology, and evolution, the breadth of this volume's scope reflects the richness and variety of topics and methods currently used today by scientists to understand the way our brain endows us with the faculty to produce and appreciate art and aesthetics.
Posted in Aesthetics

The Two Cultures

Author: C. P. Snow,Stefan Collini

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

ISBN: 1107606144

Category: Philosophy

Page: 179

View: 4256

The importance of science and technology and future of education and research are just some of the subjects discussed here.
Posted in Philosophy

Rights Come to Mind

Brain Injury, Ethics, and the Struggle for Consciousness

Author: Joseph J. Fins

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

ISBN: 052188750X

Category: Law

Page: 250

View: 7172

Joseph J. Fins calls for a reconsideration of severe brain injury treatment, including discussion of public policy and physician advocacy.
Posted in Law

The Sense of Agency

Author: Patrick Haggard,Baruch Eitam

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0190267291

Category: Psychology

Page: 288

View: 1823

Agency has two meanings in psychology and neuroscience. It can refer to one's capacity to affect the world and act in line with one's goals and desires--this is the objective aspect of agency. But agency can also refer to the subjective experience of controlling one's actions, or how it feels to achieve one's goals or affect the world. This subjective aspect is known as the sense of agency, and it is an important part of what makes us human. Interest in the sense of agency has exploded since the early 2000s, largely because scientists have learned that it can be studied objectively through analyses of human judgment, behavior, and the brain. This book brings together some of the world's leading researchers to give structure to this nascent but rapidly growing field. The contributors address questions such as: What role does agency play in the sense of self? Is agency based on predicting outcomes of actions? And what are the links between agency and motivation? Recent work on the sense of agency has been markedly interdisciplinary. The chapters collected here combine ideas and methods from fields as diverse as engineering, psychology, neurology, neuroscience, and philosophy of mind, making the book a valuable resource for any student or researcher interested in action, volition, and exploring how mind and brain are organized.
Posted in Psychology

The Deep Learning Revolution

Author: Terrence J. Sejnowski

Publisher: MIT Press

ISBN: 026203803X

Category: Computers

Page: 352

View: 997

How deep learning—from Google Translate to driverless cars to personal cognitive assistants—is changing our lives and transforming every sector of the economy. The deep learning revolution has brought us driverless cars, the greatly improved Google Translate, fluent conversations with Siri and Alexa, and enormous profits from automated trading on the New York Stock Exchange. Deep learning networks can play poker better than professional poker players and defeat a world champion at Go. In this book, Terry Sejnowski explains how deep learning went from being an arcane academic field to a disruptive technology in the information economy. Sejnowski played an important role in the founding of deep learning, as one of a small group of researchers in the 1980s who challenged the prevailing logic-and-symbol based version of AI. The new version of AI Sejnowski and others developed, which became deep learning, is fueled instead by data. Deep networks learn from data in the same way that babies experience the world, starting with fresh eyes and gradually acquiring the skills needed to navigate novel environments. Learning algorithms extract information from raw data; information can be used to create knowledge; knowledge underlies understanding; understanding leads to wisdom. Someday a driverless car will know the road better than you do and drive with more skill; a deep learning network will diagnose your illness; a personal cognitive assistant will augment your puny human brain. It took nature many millions of years to evolve human intelligence; AI is on a trajectory measured in decades. Sejnowski prepares us for a deep learning future.
Posted in Computers

A Brief History of Everyone Who Ever Lived

The Stories in Our Genes

Author: Adam Rutherford

Publisher: Weidenfeld & Nicolson

ISBN: 9781780229072

Category:

Page: 432

View: 1635

This is a story about you. It is the history of who you are and how you came to be. It is unique to you, as it is to each of the 100 billion modern humans who have ever drawn breath. But it is also our collective story, because in every one of our genomes we each carry the history of our species - births, deaths, disease, war, famine, migration and a lot of sex. In this captivating journey through the expanding landscape of genetics, Adam Rutherford reveals what our genes now tell us about human history, and what history can now tell us about our genes. From Neanderthals to murder, from redheads to race, dead kings to plague, evolution to epigenetics, this is a demystifying and illuminating new portrait of who we are and how we came to be.
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