Reductionism in Art and Brain Science

Author: Eric Kandel
Publisher: Columbia University Press
ISBN: 0231542089
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
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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.

The Disordered Mind

Author: Eric R. Kandel
Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux
ISBN: 0374716102
Format: PDF, ePub
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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.

The Age of Insight

Author: Eric R. Kandel
Publisher: Random House Incorporated
ISBN: 1400068711
Format: PDF, ePub
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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.

Art and the Brain

Author: Amy Ione
Publisher: BRILL
ISBN: 900432299X
Format: PDF, Mobi
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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.

The Aesthetic Brain

Author: Anjan Chatterjee
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0199811806
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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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.

Splendors and Miseries of the Brain

Author: Semir Zeki
Publisher: John Wiley & Sons
ISBN: 1444359479
Format: PDF, Kindle
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Splendors and Miseries of the Brain examines the elegant and efficient machinery of the brain, showing that by studying music, art, literature, and love, we can reach important conclusions about how the brain functions. discusses creativity and the search for perfection in the brain examines the power of the unfinished and why it has such a powerful hold on the imagination discusses Platonic concepts in light of the brain shows that aesthetic theories are best understood in terms of the brain discusses the inherited concept of unity-in-love using evidence derived from the world literature of love addresses the role of the synthetic concept in the brain (the synthesis of many experiences) in relation to art, using examples taken from the work of Michelangelo, Cézanne, Balzac, Dante, and others

How Art Works

Author: Ellen Winner
Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
ISBN: 0190863358
Format: PDF, ePub
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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.

Art and the Brain

Author: Joseph Goguen
Publisher: Imprint Academic
ISBN: 9780907845454
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
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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?

Inner Vision

Author: Semir Zeki
Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
ISBN: 9780198505198
Format: PDF, Mobi
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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.

Experiencing Art

Author: Arthur Shimamura
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0199791538
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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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.