Psychology and/of art

As university blogs (learning logs) are transitory creatures, this will be the permanent home of links to research papers originating in psychology and having relevance to art. This is about pseudo-hallucinations (vivid mental imagery) and Ganzflicker. Pseudo-hallucinations: why some people see more vivid mental images than others – test yourself here ( Cognitive flexibility, IQ, and creativity. IQ tests can’t measure it, but ‘cognitive flexibility’ is key to learning and creativity ( How context (a museum) affects your appreciation of art. BPS Research Digest Feb 2015. Why colour shifted abstracts are less attractive than the original (they used a Delaunay … Continue reading Psychology and/of art

What’s it worth? The Banksy art dilemma

As an art trail survivor (with two more days to go I worry that might be fake news) out on a limb away from the centre of the action, I’m questioning again what it’s all about. There are two of us, we’re in a tent, and every time it breathes in, we throw ourselves at the collapsing exhibits to preserve their dignity. With just two venues in the village, we’re the Pluto of the town’s art trail/summer fair helio-centre and traffic is so light it may as well be helium. But there’s more to it than just distance, there’s display … Continue reading What’s it worth? The Banksy art dilemma


Came across this word in an episode of The Verb broadcast on April 26th 2019 and still hadn’t quite got the meaning by the end so had to look it up. Suddenly then thought there might be a case for palimpsestic art – painting over old prints from boot sales but without quite obscuring the original. Suddenly also discovered that my made up word, palimpsestic, actually exists and that I’m well behind the curve with regard to palimpsestic art! This is from Artopium, accessed 2nd May 2019. I think in my mind I was seeing an old image, maybe even … Continue reading Palimpsest

Art, meaning, and communication

Last night I finished watching a documentary on Sean Scully, a large, somewhat opinionated man whose abstracts attract big money. He has a troubled past but nevertheless, he annoyed me with is arrogance and so I was taking his story in bite-sized doses. Then in the last twenty minutes, asked why he goes to his galleries and explains his paintings, he said this: You can’t make something as arrogant as an abstract painting and then just say get on with it or you’re stupid. Suddenly, whether it’s because he has a personal need to be understood – and that’s certainly … Continue reading Art, meaning, and communication

Steyning Arts trail

It’s that time of year when artists of all varieties pack the products of their febrile imaginations into a vehicle and head off to sit hopefully in a tent or, if they’re lucky, someone’s front room with a disenfranchised cat. This year that’s going to be me but I’m not going far and while there will be a tent of sorts, there’s also a very amenable host, a couple of all-over-you cats, a dog, and a bunch of fluffy-trousered chickens. Last year I was a visitor and I spent much of my time there so, barring seriously adverse weather conditions, … Continue reading Steyning Arts trail

Self portrait – is this it?

Whatever else, I may have found a better use for cling film than wrapping cucumbers. Here we go, what do you think? What’s the cling film thing all about then? In a selfie-obsessed world I hate them; possibly because however I hold the phone, I always look like a witch. I haven’t got round to applying filters though, instead I go old school and aim the camera at a mirror where at least I can keep a bit of distance between me and the eventual image. So I took a photo of a reflection and then made a painting of … Continue reading Self portrait – is this it?

Cats playing to the gallery

This is a small corner of Steyning’s new gallery and shop, The Basement (instagram @thebasement93), a lovely new outlet at the bottom of the High Street, near the independent Steyning Book Shop, and the remarkable Sussex Produce Company. Within a matter of a few dozen yards, you can find a unique piece of art, a hand-chosen book, and a strangely shaped vegetable you have to Google when you get home. I left some mounted prints there today of the four cat cards. Also a sheep. All hand drawn then finished in a digital painting programme called Rebelle. Have look – … Continue reading Cats playing to the gallery