From VSAC to ECVP Lecture
Sunday 2 September 2012, 12:15-13:15
Cortical Dynamics of Visual Perception, Spatial Attention, and Conscious Recognition with Applications to Understanding Visual Art
Stephen Grossberg (Boston University)
There has been a lot of progress in theoretically understanding how our brains see. This progress includes characterization of the laminar cortical circuits for pre-attentively processing 3D boundaries and surfaces; the manner in which boundary and surface representations interact resonantly with attention to generate conscious perceptual experiences; the coordinated use of spatial and object attention to learn invariant category representations with which to recognize objects as we scan scenes with eye movements; the perceptual stability that is achieved despite the evanescent nature of visual cues during visual scanning; and the accumulation of evidence during visual search using contextual cues to understand scenes more efficiently. This talk will provide a self-contained summary of concepts and models for explaining how various of these processes work, and illustrative perceptual and neurobiological data that these models have explained and predicted. The talk will also suggest how these discoveries may clarify how we see visual art, and some of the intellectual struggles that famous artists experienced to achieve their art.