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What Your Eyes Tell Your Brain About Art



What Your Eyes Tell Your Brain About Art

The title and contents of this talk have been inspired by a very influential research article. It is one of the most cited scientific papers of all time, published in 1959 by a team of neurophysiologists and engineers, Lettvin, McCulloch and Pitts who are considered to be the founders of modern cybernetics. Their article, What the Frog's Eye Tells the Frog's Brain, refers to the role of internal cortical models in the communication or interfacing of the information in the outside world with the practical contextual task of the viewer. It shows how eye movements are the modality of this communication. The same duality between eye movements and internal models plays a fundamental role in humans. When we look, e.g., at art, it explains those neurological processes involved in neuroaesthetics. Claudio Privitera's talk undertakes this innovative approach to neuroaesthetics. It explains this duality and discusses the communication between the artist and the viewer's aesthetic perception.

Claudio Privitera's research interests cover several aspects of biological and computational perception from a motor theory standpoint. In vision, he worked on Scanpath eye movements and visual attention, more recently, applying these domains to neuroaesthetics. His research interests are also in the area of the human pupillary mechanism with a specific emphasis on clinical, psychological and cognitive applications. He received the Laurea degree in Computer Science from the University of Pisa, Italy. He held a PhD fellowship within the National Research Program on Bioengineering working at DIST, Department of Informatics, Systems, and Telecommunications of the University of Genoa, Italy. In 1994, he worked at Laboratorie Scribens, École Polytechnique, Université de Montréal. From 1995 to 1997 he held a postdoctoral position at the University of California at Berkeley. He joined the Neurology and Telerobotics Units directed by Lawrence Stark in 1997 and until 2004. He taught for several years in the Mechanical Engineering Department. Currently he is still at the University of California at Berkeley working in the School of Optometry. In parallel with his basic scientific and academic interests he also has industry experience directing the R&D efforts of a few Silicon Valley companies. Presently, he holds the position of Chief Scientist at Neuroptics Inc.

The series Science & Technology is organized in collaboration with Franco Folini and ItaliaGeeks.


Date: Thursday, June 21, 2018

Time: From 6:30 pm To 8:30 pm

Organized by : Italian Cultural Institute

In collaboration with : Italia Geeks, Novedge

Entrance : Free


Italian Cultural Institute, San Francisco