Looking Around, Called to Attention

Juno Goes to the Getty from Hammer Museum on Vimeo.

My own artistic goals include a first order objective: that the art work bring the potential viewer to a full stop and motivate this viewer to use their vision and presence to seek further experience. This moves into the second order goal: to have the ecology of this interaction support the joining of enactive resources to the task of deeper seeking.

Yet, the slightly less pretentious aim is to inspire a viewer to spend a considerable amount of their time with the art work. I’m very pleased when the time adds up to over a minute, and have been overjoyed when it adds up to five minutes, ten minutes or more.

As the creator of the art work, I go into it knowing that the secret to inspiring seeking is embedding both accessible and obscure patterns into the image, and, inflecting the greater patterned context with the gravity of archetypes.

As my own experiments have developed along new vectors of hypothesizing about patterns and pattern recognition and the ecology of enactive experience, some of these experiments have gone about reducing complexity and dialing up the archetypal impact. Mandalas, circles, spheres, fourness.

The other crucial aspect is scale. Somewhere between four and seven feet demands attention.

Stephen Calhoun, artist

Both these pieces, by design, are effective attention ‘grabbers.’

This post has links to a lot of interesting articles about viewing and viewing in museums. Some know of the “seven second rule,” a rule derived from research into the average time a museum goer spends in front of an art work. Many museums devote considerable resources to learning about the behavioral propensities of their audience. Of course this results in an informed response and has led to an increasingly sophisticated ‘technics’ of presentation.

How do you view?

from this article:
“The difference between a good and bad work of art is how long it detains us. When you walk into an art gallery there is no start or finish, no interval. You walk around, look at what takes your fancy, move on, stop, go away, come back. It’s a cruel, casual blood sport. Piles of rubbish forming the silhouette of faces, or a photograph of the artist naked in a beach hut are nice ideas but essentially one-liners – you move on quickly. The simplest, most final way to dismiss a work of art is to say it does not reward serious attention.”

Are ten objects better than one?

Classic Vs. Contemporary Art: A Test Of Museum-Goers’ Interest

We know what we like, and it’s not modern art! How gallery visitors only viewed work by Damien Hirst and Tracy Emin for less than 5 seconds

The Art of Slowing Down In a Museum

Evaluating the Practical Applications of Eye Tracking in Museums

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