1932

Abstract

Pictorial relief is a quality of visual awareness that happens when one looks into (as opposed to at) a picture. It has no physical counterpart of a geometrical nature. It takes account of cues, mentally identified in the tonal gradients of the physical picture—pigments distributed over a planar substrate. Among generally recognized qualities of relief are color, pattern, texture, shape, and depth. This review focuses on geometrical properties, the spatial variation of depth. To be aware of an extended quality like relief implies a “depth” dimension, a nonphysical spatial entity that may smoothly vary in a surface-like manner. The conceptual understanding is in terms of formal geometry. The review centers on pertinent facts and formal models. The facts are necessarily so-called brute facts (i.e., they cannot be explained scientifically). This review is a foray into the speculative and experimental phenomenology of the visual field.

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2018-09-15
2024-04-14
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