Speaker: Prof. Dr. Ernst Pöppel
University of Munich, Germany
Time: 13:30pm – 15:00pm
Date: May 8 (Thu), 2014
Venue: Meeting Room Level 5, South Building
Art appears to be a fundamental characteristic of human nature. In all cultures poetry, music, or visual art have been developed. The question arises whether one can use art for a “reversed enginieering”, i.e., to get a better insight into neurocognitive processes. In the talk examples will be given from visual art, music and poetry; complex stimuli from the arts provide an alternative view into the cognitive machinery enriching the paradigm of experimental work. It will be argued that artists use implicit knowledge in their creations which can be made explicit again. Examples in the visual arts are the Mona Lisa of Leonardo or self portraits of Rembrandt with respect to laterality in face perception; from Manet, Goya or Dali with respect to hemispheric dominance; from cubism employing ambiguities in perception; or from the Op Art harvesting lateral inhibition. Examples in music and poetry focus on the temporal dynamics of cognition with examples from Wagner, Goethe or Shakespeare indicating the artist’s implicit use of a three second temporal window in musical motifs and verses in poetry. Finally, it will stressed that psychological knowlege enriches the appreciation of art.
Edges and surfaces - or Mona Lisa: Looking at the arts from the neurocognitive point of view(.pdf)