Are paintings able to think?


From 1 July 2014


Are paintings able to think?Are paintings able to think?


Are paintings able to think?
James Elkins 
Lecture and discussion 
July 1, Tuesday, 7:30 pm

Are paintings able to think?
Why do we try to “read” an image? Is it possible to convey in words the sense of a painting, or is there always something left unsaid? Does our confidence in the fact that an image always expresses an idea obstruct our ability to perceive the image, or does it help us to understand its deeper nature? Can a visual image reproduce a verbal text, or does it simply imitate it? Or is there another type of connection?

In his lecture James Elkins will talk about the relationship between word, idea and image: about the ability of painting to think.

Professor James Elkins is an art historian, visual studies expert, and art-critic, head of the Department of Art History, Theory, and Criticism at the Art Institute of Chicago. Among his written works are scholarly books aimed at art historians and popular publications for the general public. Some, such as Why are Our Pictures Puzzles? On the Modern Origins of Pictorial Complexity (1999), are dedicated to the question of describing art. Others, such as  Six Stories from the End of Representation: Images in Painting, Photography, Microscopy, Astronomy, Particle Physics, and Quantum Mechanics, 1985-2000 (2008), explore images in art and science, and the possibilities of seeing in general. One of his most recent books is What Photography Is (2012), a peculiar answer to Roland Barthes’ Camera Lucida.

Entrance is free, space is limited, please arrive early