Narratives On Visual Perception

The brain is effectively capable of processing simultaneous and multiple sensory stimuli, focusing our attention, organizing information, and assigning meaning to our perceptual experiences. In mind, cognitive processes, help us in our communication, social interactions, and expanding our personality.

In the research towards an understanding of the brain, scientists have discovered that visual processing uses a significant quota, about 30 percent, of its capacity. The retina, which contains well over 100 million neurons, converts light into electrical signals and transmits it to the optical nerve. The retina is itself a physical extension of the brain. It is of interest to note that visual information is processed in mind to give meaning to the reality and the world around us. The brain handles differently visual impressions in different individuals, underlying the importance of brain structure and diverse brain mechanisms, as well as genetics, culture, personality, and environment.

Vision and visual perception can be regarded as the mind’s opposing thumb, attempting a grip on the elusive reality. Looking, seeing, and making sense of the world has never been a straightforward endeavor, cognitive sciences provide us with evidence which corroborates this statement.

In the early 19th century, experiments in chemistry involving light-sensitive substances signaled the emergence of a new revolutionary practice in the field of visual representation. Photography, a lens-based medium, slices the arrow of time, extracting visual information, which in our collective consciousness is generally understood and accepted as a reference, representation, and evidence of an event. Photography invests in the illusion of permanence and exercises an alluring grip on our memory.

With vision, information is collected via the eye and sent to the brain, which uses it to make sense of the world. Photography, as an extension of the brain’s processes, expands our understanding of the world. When we capture images of our environment, we are extending our minds to include and understand what comes in through the camera lens. Through photography, we can store information about the world and reality, which helps broaden the mind with experiences, and also fulfill it or disturb it emotionally (depending on the context of the photo).

However, there are circumstances in some individuals affected by dementia, where the brain misinterprets sensory information, including visual stimuli. In such cases, these individuals misunderstand the world around them. The disruption of visual and hence life’s narrative and the elusiveness of meaning in one’s life becomes apparent when watching a loved one fade into oblivion and the world gradually but steadily slipping away from his/her grasp.

Realities of Information is a study exploring the process whereby fragmented experiences, presented photographically as distinct segments of information, forge into a flow of continuity inside a viewer’s brain. The work itself lies in a place of ambiguity between reality and memory. Visual narratives, exist in a state of contextual limbo and intend to directly engage human intuition and insight to fuse pieces of information into an emerging story.

This project essentially began in 2007, and it evolved as a slow accumulation of images, shot across the United States, and Europe. From San Francisco to New York and from the UK to Greece, 44 works convey a sense of time, place, and emotion in a triangulation of reminiscences. Triptychs and diptychs formed of situations and environments, which drew my attention with the color, form, texture, and composition, as well as the varying intensity of light which trigger the action.

The objective here is to invite the viewer towards an awareness that reality is essentially an interpretation inside the conscious brain. That visual perception can relate to many overlapping factors such as genetics, personality, language, culture, intention, emotion, and mental health. Realities of Information can be seen as simulation mechanisms, aiming to intrigue viewers to experience the frustration of a person with dementia or other cognitive deficiencies.

Credits: This project was made possible with the generous attention, support and guidance of Judy Walgren at Michigan State University, UK based curator, Samia Ashraf, Dr. Agnes Leotsakos, WHO Healthcare Specialist, and Dr. Konstantinos Petsanis, Behavioral Neurologist at Biel Hospital Centre in Geneva.

The brain is effectively capable of processing simultaneous and multiple sensory stimuli, focusing our attention, organizing information, and assigning meaning to our perceptual experiences. In mind, cognitive processes, help us in our communication, social interactions, and expanding our personality.

In the research towards an understanding of the brain, scientists have discovered that visual processing uses a significant quota, about 30 percent, of its capacity. The retina, which contains well over 100 million neurons, converts light into electrical signals and transmits it to the optical nerve. The retina is itself a physical extension of the brain. It is of interest to note that visual information is processed in mind to give meaning to the reality and the world around us. The brain handles differently visual impressions in different individuals, underlying the importance of brain structure and diverse brain mechanisms, as well as genetics, culture, personality, and environment.

Vision and visual perception can be regarded as the mind’s opposing thumb, attempting a grip on the elusive reality. Looking, seeing, and making sense of the world has never been a straightforward endeavor, cognitive sciences provide us with evidence which corroborates this statement.

In the early 19th century, experiments in chemistry involving light-sensitive substances signaled the emergence of a new revolutionary practice in the field of visual representation. Photography, a lens-based medium, slices the arrow of time, extracting visual information, which in our collective consciousness is generally understood and accepted as a reference, representation, and evidence of an event. Photography invests in the illusion of permanence and exercises an alluring grip on our memory.

With vision, information is collected via the eye and sent to the brain, which uses it to make sense of the world. Photography, as an extension of the brain’s processes, expands our understanding of the world. When we capture images of our environment, we are extending our minds to include and understand what comes in through the camera lens. Through photography, we can store information about the world and reality, which helps broaden the mind with experiences, and also fulfill it or disturb it emotionally (depending on the context of the photo).

However, there are circumstances in some individuals affected by dementia, where the brain misinterprets sensory information, including visual stimuli. In such cases, these individuals misunderstand the world around them. The disruption of visual and hence life’s narrative and the elusiveness of meaning in one’s life becomes apparent when watching a loved one fade into oblivion and the world gradually but steadily slipping away from his/her grasp.

Realities of Information is a study exploring the process whereby fragmented experiences, presented photographically as distinct segments of information, forge into a flow of continuity inside a viewer’s brain. The work itself lies in a place of ambiguity between reality and memory. Visual narratives, exist in a state of contextual limbo and intend to directly engage human intuition and insight to fuse pieces of information into an emerging story.

This project essentially began in 2007, and it evolved as a slow accumulation of images, shot across the United States, and Europe. From San Francisco to New York and from the UK to Greece, 44 works convey a sense of time, place, and emotion in a triangulation of reminiscences. Triptychs and diptychs formed of situations and environments, which drew my attention with the color, form, texture, and composition, as well as the varying intensity of light which trigger the action.

The objective here is to invite the viewer towards an awareness that reality is essentially an interpretation inside the conscious brain. That visual perception can relate to many overlapping factors such as genetics, personality, language, culture, intention, emotion, and mental health. Realities of Information can be seen as simulation mechanisms, aiming to intrigue viewers to experience the frustration of a person with dementia or other cognitive deficiencies.

Credits: This project was made possible with the generous attention, support and guidance of Judy Walgren at Michigan State University, UK based curator, Samia Ashraf, Dr. Agnes Leotsakos, WHO Healthcare Specialist, and Dr. Konstantinos Petsanis, Behavioral Neurologist at Biel Hospital Centre in Geneva.