Heightened perception: Donald Judd, John Chamberlain, Robert Irwin, and Larry Bell, 1960-1975

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Heightened perception: Donald Judd, John Chamberlain, Robert Irwin, and Larry Bell, 1960-1975

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dc.contributor.advisor Shiff, Richard
dc.creator Kohn, Adrian Michael
dc.date.accessioned 2010-02-01T17:11:13Z
dc.date.available 2010-02-01T17:11:13Z
dc.date.created 2009-05
dc.date.issued 2010-02-01T17:11:13Z
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/2152/6846
dc.description.abstract This dissertation explains how and why some American artists investigated visual phenomena and heightened perception during the 1960s and 1970s. As an analytical account grounded in the perceptual experience of artworks and in archival research of the claims artists made for their creations, this study is centered around the themes of re-sensitizing one’s body and perceptual faculties, the process of empirical discovery, and the ultimate inability of language to satisfactorily describe sensory phenomena. In Chapter 1, I establish a brief intellectual history of research concerning the sensory faculties from fields in the humanities, including psychology, philosophy, and art history. In Chapter 2, I analyze Judd’s art-critical concept of optical phenomena and consider the art about which he wrote, including his own, on the basis of this tentative classification. In Chapter 3, I evaluate John Chamberlain’s lacquer paintings in terms of the visual phenomena generated by his innovative paint mixtures and application techniques, then consider his provisional separation of intuition and intellect. In Chapter 4, I examine Robert Irwin’s efforts to refine his visual attentiveness and, in the course of doing so, I also test the accompanying artworks he made that demand such unusually acute observation. In Chapter 5, I argue that distinguishing physical, pictorial, and reflected visual phenomena in Larry Bell’s pieces proves to be an exceptional challenge, a problem compounded by the inefficacy of trying to communicate visual discoveries using language. In the Conclusion, I demonstrate that by restoring the role of heightened perception and sensory discovery to the history of art of the 1960s and 1970s, this dissertation helps to preserve the complexity and variety of works made during that time.
dc.format.medium electronic
dc.language.iso eng
dc.rights Copyright © is held by the author. Presentation of this material on the Libraries' web site by University Libraries, The University of Texas at Austin was made possible under a limited license grant from the author who has retained all copyrights in the works.
dc.subject American artists
dc.subject 1960s
dc.subject 1970s
dc.subject Visual phenomena
dc.subject Heightened perception
dc.subject Perceptual experience
dc.subject Sensory phenomena
dc.subject Judd, Donald, 1928-1994
dc.subject Chamberlain, John, 1927-
dc.subject Irwin, Robert
dc.subject Bell, Larry
dc.title Heightened perception: Donald Judd, John Chamberlain, Robert Irwin, and Larry Bell, 1960-1975
dc.description.department Art and Art History
dc.type.genre Thesis
dc.type.material text
thesis.degree.department Art and Art History
thesis.degree.discipline Art History
thesis.degree.grantor The University of Texas at Austin
thesis.degree.level Doctoral
thesis.degree.name Doctor of Philosophy

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