Art, History and Perception


Diptych Eagles
Artist: Steven Young Lee
Image courtesy Duane Reed Gallery

Art, History and Perception Workshop (Fri May 5 UTSC: Miller Lash House – Sat May 6 Downtown Campus JHB418).

Works of art and visual culture are poised at the intersection of history and perception,imbued with their historical situation and with historical relationships to other works. Yet for the most part, it is through their perceptible properties that they have their impact.

To explore this nexus, the workshop will bring together art historians with two sub-disciplines from philosophy – philosophy of perception as well as aesthetics – to initiate fully three-way collaborative research.

The workshop will address a number of questions of broad interest to which art historians and philosophers of art and perception have turned their attention. For example:

1. How are historical developments made perceptibly manifest in artworks and non-art pictures more broadly, including photographs?
2. What is aesthetic value? How can such value be both historically contingent and perceptual in nature?
3. How do pictures work? How do diverse kinds of pictorial vehicles make contents available?
4. What is distinctive about photographs?
5. What makes properties aesthetic and when is perceptual experience aesthetic?




Art History

Jason Gaiger
University of Oxford, The Ruskin School of Drawing and Fine Art
Yi (Evie) Gu
University of Toronto Scarborough, Dept. of Arts, Culture and Media

Philosophy of Art or Perception

Dominic McIver Lopes
The University of British Columbia, Philosophy
Bence Nanay
University of Antwerp, Centre for Philosophical Psychology

Belinda Piercy
University of Toronto, Philosophy

Kendall L. Walton
University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Philosophy


For any questions about the workshop or general inquiries, please contact:


Supporting Partners

The workshop is supported by the University of Toronto, the American Society for Aesthetics and the Social Sciences and Humanities Council of Canada Connections Grant.


University of Toronto:

The University of Toronto Scarborough, Offices of the Vice-Principal Research, and the Vice-Principal Academic and Dean.

UTSC Dept of Philosophy, STG Dept of Philosophy, UTM Dept of Philosophy.

Department of Visual Studies UTM
The Art Museum University of Toronto
University College University of Toronto



American Society for Aesthetics

Any views, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this {article, book, exhibition, film, program, database, report, Web resource} do not necessarily represent those of the American Society for Aesthetics.