Neuroscience and Art: Perspectives from Neuroscience Program Director, Dr. Mike Ferragamo

Posted on April 14th, 2016 by

A new perspective on art is on display until April 24th at the Hillstrom Museum of Art.

Two Pigeons, a painting by B.J.O. Nordfeldt

Two Pigeons, a painting by B.J.O. Nordfeldt

B.J.O. Nordfeldt’s painting, Two Pigeons, which is presently featured at the Hillstrom, has a connection to the Neuroscience Program and Department of Psychological Science. Dr. Mike Ferragamo and Dr. Don Myers, Director of the Hillstrom Museum,  share their disciplinary expertise on the painting and describe research conducted on the seemingly simple subject of pigeons. Their collaboration is part of the FOCUS IN/ON Gustavus community collaboration. While the beauty of Nordfeldt’s work is captivating on its own, after reading Dr. Ferragamo’s  fascinating review of the research on pigeons showing they “discriminate between novel paintings by the same artist” and show “exceptional capacity for visual memory,” the viewer/reader walks away with a new respect for these birds.  Dr. Ferragamo uses findings from the field of Neuroscience to help us gain an even greater appreciation of a fascinating and visually pleasing artwork. Please take time to attend the exhibit, view the painting, and read Dr. Ferragamo’s article until April 24th .  

Submitted by: Shannon Graham


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