Nature Essay: 150 years of scientific illustration by Geoffrey Belknap

Image-making, research and visual technologies have shaped each other over the past century and a half, argues Geoffrey Belknap, marking Nature’s anniversary, here

Now Available: Eye centring in selfies posted on Instagram

Abstract
Earlier work by one of us examined a historical corpus of portraits and found that artists often paint the subject such that one eye is centred horizontally. If due to psychological mechanisms constraining artistic composition, this eye-centring bias should be detectable also in portraits by non-professionals. However, this finding has been questioned both on theoretical and empirical grounds. Here we tested eye-centring in a larger (N ~ = 4000) and more representative set of selfies spontaneously posted on Instagram from six world cities. In contrast with previous selfie results, the distribution of the most-centred eye position peaked almost exactly at the horizontal centre of the image and was statistically different from predictions based on realistic Monte-Carlo predictions. In addition, we observed a small but statistically reliable pseudoneglect effect as well as a preference for centring the left-eye. An eye-centring tendency appears to exist in self-portraits by non-artists.

Authors: Nicola BrunoID1*, Marco Bertamini2*, Christopher W. Tyler
PLoS ONE14(7): e0218663.
PDF

1 DiMeC, Università di Parma, Parma, Italy,

2 Department of Psychological Science, University of Liverpool, Liverpool, United Kingdom,

3 Division of Optometry and Vision Sciences, School of Health Sciences, City University of London, London, United Kingdom

* M.Bertamini@liverpool.ac.uk (MB); nicola.bruno@unipr.it (NB)

(Also see MedicalResearch.com interview here and articles)

EXHIBITION: Mana BSMT Presents: N. M. Brandreth’s Phantasmagoria’s Seeing Shadows

Apr. 26–Jun. 7, 2019
MORE INFORMATION

Have you ever glimpsed a movement out of the corner of your eye and turned to find nothing there? Have you ever bolted up the basement steps convinced that something was down there with you? Seeing Shadows attempts to visualize these sensations as photographic objects. Derived from Brandreth’s love for horror and the macabre, and from the histories of photography and film, these unique handmade works are at once seductive and utterly uncanny.

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Conference: DIGITAL DIRECTIONS: Fundamentals of Creating and Managing Digital Collections

August 19-20, 2019
Overland Park, Kansas (Kansas City Metro Area)

ABOUT THE CONFERENCE: Are you ready to take on a digital preservation project or program, but have been unsure of how to begin? Or have you already begun an initiative and you want to confirm that you are on the right track? The Digital Directions conference delivers a comprehensive introduction to digitization and digital preservation during two days of in-person, focused instruction. Learn the fundamentals and return home ARMED WITH KNOWLEDGE.

Now in its 12th year, Digital Directions provides instruction on good practices and practical strategies for the creation, curation, and use of digital collections. Meet colleagues from institutions large and small who share similar challenges, and interact one-on-one with the faculty of national experts.

WHO SHOULD ATTEND? The Digital Directions conference is geared toward professionals working with digital collections at archives, libraries, museums, historical organizations, government agencies, corporate archives, and other organizations that steward digital collections. Students are also welcome, and a discounted registration rate is available.

REGISTER NOW and SAVE with the Early-bird Discount!

COMPLETE DETAILS and Registration Information: www.nedcc.org/dd19

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RIP: Michael Wolf (1954-2019)

Vision and Justice: The Racial Bias Built Into Photography

Recently, Sarah Lewis, a Harvard professor organized a two-day Vision and Justice conference on the role of the arts in relation to citizenship, race, and justice. As it turned out, she experienced some of this unconscious bias at this very event. Her essay exploring the relationship between racism and the camera, titled The Racial Bias Built Into Photography, was published by the New York Times on April 25, 2019.

At the conference, a technician categorizing light skin as the norm saw other skin tones as needing special corrective care. As Lewis, a black women, explains:

“My work looks at how the right to be recognized justly in a democracy has been tied to the impact of images and representation in the public realm. It examines how the construction of public pictures limits and enlarges our notion of who counts in American society. It is the subject of my core curriculum class at Harvard University. It also happened to be the subject of my presentation that day.”

What stands out in her article is how she interweaves a personal example of the how unconscious bias is built into photography, (and I would add life itself) into the larger culture. In a nut shell, she asks: “What is preventing us from correcting the inherited bias in camera and film technology?” Continue reading “Vision and Justice: The Racial Bias Built Into Photography”

CFP: American Art and Visual Culture Seminar

CALL FOR PROPOSALS:
Submission Deadline: Monday, June 3, 2019

The Newberry Seminar in American Art and Visual Culture is open to those working in the art history and visual culture of the United States, from the colonial era to the present. They are inviting papers that cross and challenge borders both within and outside the discipline that engage questions of methodology and ideology, examine exhibition and provenance history, probe the categories of race, ethnicity, class, and gender, and reflect critically on the state and outlook of the field.

They also welcome topics focusing on Chicago art and design within the larger national and international contexts, such as: thematic studies on world’s fairs, Chicago’s Gilded Age, institutional/private/corporate display practices, urban landscapes, African-American art past and present, and self-taught artists.

Flyer about the seminar
More information: scholarlyseminars@newberry.org
Submit a proposal at https://www.newberry.org/seminar-proposal-form

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