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Vision, reflection, and desire in western painting

Author: David Summers
Publisher: Chapel Hill : University of North Carolina Press, ©2007.
Series: Bettie Allison Rand lectures in art history.
Edition/Format:   Print book : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
"Spanning more than 2,500 years in the history of art, Vision, Reflection, and Desire in Western Painting demonstrates how the rise and diffusion of the science of optics in ancient Greece and the Mediterranean world correlated to pictorial illusion in the development of Western painting from Hellenistic Greece to the present. Using examples from the late Middle Ages and the Renaissance, David Summers argues that  Read more...
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Material Type: Internet resource
Document Type: Book, Internet Resource
All Authors / Contributors: David Summers
ISBN: 9780807831106 0807831107
OCLC Number: 122291417
Description: ix, 213 pages : illustrations (some color) ; 24 cm.
Contents: Shadow-painting and scene-painting: the beginnings of optics and classical art --
Speculum animatum --
Speculum mundi --
Narcissus and the mirror without stain --
Afterword: perspective, optics, and the material subject.
Series Title: Bettie Allison Rand lectures in art history.
Responsibility: David Summers.
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Abstract:

Spanning more than 2,500 years in the history of art, this book demonstrates how the rise and diffusion of the science of optics in ancient Greece and Mediterranean world correlated to pictorial  Read more...

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"It is [Summer's] ability to see through the superficial relationships that bind optics, perspective and Western painting to the threads that weave them together into meaningful structures that Read more...

 
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   schema:reviewBody ""Spanning more than 2,500 years in the history of art, Vision, Reflection, and Desire in Western Painting demonstrates how the rise and diffusion of the science of optics in ancient Greece and the Mediterranean world correlated to pictorial illusion in the development of Western painting from Hellenistic Greece to the present. Using examples from the late Middle Ages and the Renaissance, David Summers argues that scene-painting (architectural backdrops) and shadow-painting (in which forms are modeled or shown as if in relation to a source of light) not only evolved in close association with geometric optics toward the end of the fifth century B.C.E., but also contributed substantially to the foundations of the new science." "The spread of understanding of how light is transmitted, reflected, and refracted is evident in the works of artists such as Brunelleschi, van Eyck, Alberti, and Leonardo. Summers shows how the artists' uses of modeling, highlighting, and foreshortening, for example, create points of view to achieve desired effects and "persuade" the eye and mind." "The interplay between optics and painting that influenced the course of Western art, Summers says, persisted as a framework for the realism of Caravaggio, Rembrandt, and Goya and continues today in modern photography and film. "Perspective" (a late Latin translation of the word "optics") has become one of the characteristic - and contested - metaphors of the modern world. Summers concludes with reflections on the implications of perspective as a world of material subjects in continuous interrelation in a material world."--Jacket." ;
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