Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Susan Petry Lecture

I went to the lecture given by Susan Petry on perception, psychology, and art. Susan
Petry is a professor of Derner Institue for Advanced Psychological Studies at Adelphi University which is in Garden City, NY. Susan Petry does art therapy, woodcarvings, and sometimes clay.

The lecture began with perception. Perception is the process where we interpret and organized our senses we perceive into a meaningful whole (also know as Gestault) Perception is important in order to survive in this world because without it we wouldn’t be able to understand and do a lot of things. Perception allows us to use things in context, simplifies, assimilate, and gives us a selective focus. Then Petry talked about illusory contour which is where you seen an edge in a drawing. There are three properties that come with illusory contour: objective ness, dual awareness, and problem solving. Petry also talked about perceptual construction, occlusion, and depth. Petry explained that in surface characteristics of a drawing 3-D guides dual awareness. Also how isolation is an understatement “less is more.”
From this lecture, I learned that the reason why people interpret art in many different ways is because we all have different perceptions. The process of perception is universal but our own experiences shape our perception. Parts of our perception can be shared with others. For instance, when Susan Petry showed us how illusory contours are visual peek-a boos; one person would point out what they saw and another person pointed out what they saw which they both have different perceptions of the same drawing, but when one showed others where and how they saw the image the other people’s perception changed.

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