Aesthetics, Perception, and Visual Art

HON 498 – Professor Stacey Kolbig

Modes of Inquiry: Textual Analysis, Scientific and Mathematical Analysis, Artistic Creation and Analysis, Historical, Social and Cultural Analysis

Course Description:

The judgment of aesthetics is based on the universal characteristics of perception. By using the rules of perception to explore our collective conception of beauty, pleasure, and art, this course explores the psychology and biology that governs and defines our experience of the visual arts. In this four-mode inquiry, three-credit (no prerequisites required) multi-disciplinary course, students will evaluate the science and cultural circumstances that govern and define visual perception as it relates to our experience and understanding of art. Through a hybrid of experimental research, studio art exercises, discussions, and lectures, students will view a variety of artwork and learn about corresponding pivotal movements. The adaptive biology responsible for the aesthetic experience and the collective circumstances that define art will be evaluated with both studio exercise and experimental research. The culmination of this evaluation will be used to examine how artists are guided by the rules of perception as they either choose to seek or refute the ideals of a pleasurable aesthetic.