Lec­tu­re »Color per­cep­ti­on and Memo­ry — The impact of color on our expe­ri­ence and beha­vi­or«

Seeing Colors International Symposium on Color Vision 19.-21.09.16 Universität Regensburg

Our “Color-Memory-Maps” show the complex structure of color memory and its effects on human behavior, which varies with context. Our findings will be presented for the first time to the scientific community at the symposium.

Ratio­na­le for the sym­po­si­um

Color visi­on is a pre­va­lent sen­so­ry moda­li­ty in modern socie­ty. We use color to com­mu­ni­ca­te messa­ges (“red means stop”), to high­light selec­ted infor­ma­ti­on, to deno­te the natio­nal iden­ti­ty (the colors in each country’s flag), and to enhan­ce the sali­ence of other­wi­se unnoti­ced infor­ma­ti­on. It has a power­ful role in grou­ping, which is why sub­way maps are often shown in color and vir­tual­ly impos­si­ble to use when prin­ted in grey sca­le. Color is abundant in natu­re and is used by ani­mals to discri­mi­na­te bet­ween ripe and unri­pe fruits or vege­ta­bles, edi­ble ver­sus none­di­ble foods, as well as bet­ween sea­so­nal chan­ges in folia­ge. We learn to asso­cia­te cer­tain colors with other sen­so­ry moda­li­ties, such as red with hot and blue with cold. Color also plays an important role in aes­thetic appre­cia­ti­on. It is essen­ti­al for pic­to­ri­al works of art, archi­tec­tu­re, design, cos­metics and fashion. The sci­en­ti­fic under­stan­ding of color visi­on goes back to the work of Sir Isaac New­ton who made important obser­va­tions about the natu­re of light and the rea­li­za­ti­on that the pro­per under­stan­ding of color is in the con­sti­tu­ti­on of the ner­vous sys­tem. In the 19th cen­tu­ry, Her­mann von Helm­holtz sug­gested that dif­fe­rent recep­tors in the eye were nee­ded to dif­fe­ren­tia­te bet­ween spec­tral colors. Working inde­pendent­ly, Ewald Hering (1872) put forth the idea that color is encoded in an ant­ago­nistic fashion with the oppo­nent axes green and red, yel­low and blue, as well as white and black. He pro­po­sed that the­se pro­ces­ses are ant­ago­nistic over space and time, in agree­ment with the ear­lier work of the French che­mist Michel Euge­ne Che­vreul (1839) who stu­di­ed how the appearan­ce of colo­red sur­faces is alte­red by simul­ta­neous viewing of ano­t­her colo­red sur­face. Modern visi­on sci­ence has deepe­ned our under­stan­ding of color visi­on. This sym­po­si­um will bring toge­ther experts in color visi­on to dis­cuss cur­rent theo­ries of color and known phe­no­me­na rela­ted to color visi­on, inclu­ding the under­ly­ing reti­nal and brain pro­ces­ses. The­se experts have been invi­ted to pre­sent their results in a man­ner that is under­stan­d­a­ble to an edu­ca­ted audi­ence, who have litt­le or no spe­cia­li­zed know­ledge about color visi­on. Our inter­di­sci­pli­na­ry approach will unite rese­ar­chers from neu­ro­sci­ence, oph­thal­mo­lo­gy, visi­on and color sci­ence, cogni­ti­ve psy­cho­lo­gy, art histo­ry and phi­lo­so­phy.

Abs­tract Lecu­re Axel Bue­ther

In the first step of our psy­cho­lo­gi­cal expe­ri­ment about 500 par­ti­ci­pants explo­red and docu­men­ted the effects of 13 “psy­cho­lo­gi­cal pri­ma­ry colors” (Ber­lin and Kay, 1969) over a peri­od of 6 years. Sub­se­quent­ly more than 1 mil­li­on images were sys­te­ma­ti­cal­ly eva­lua­ted.

The aim of the stu­dy was to show our ever­y­day know­ledge about colors and to find a form of visua­li­za­ti­on for the com­plex effects of colors on our expe­ri­ence and beha­vi­or.

Link Sci­en­ti­fic Pro­gram

Orga­ni­zers: 
Mark Green­lee, John S. Wer­ner, Chris­toph Wag­ner

Dates:
Sep­tem­ber 19 – 21, 2016

Venue:
Uni­ver­si­ty of Regens­burg
Mon­day, Sep­tem­ber 19th — Audi­max -
Tues­day and Wed­nes­day, Sep­tem­ber 20th and 21st  — Viel­berth Buil­ding, Lec­tu­re thea­ter H24 and Foy­er

Link Orga­ni­zers Home­page

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10.07.16 in Wissenstransfer

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