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Repeat of 7 oblong photos of pair of lips on face, down left side, on white cover, Second Sight in black font

Second Sight

The Paradox of Vision in Contemporary Art

By (author) Ellen Y. Tani
Commentaries by Amanda Cachia
Contributions by Joseph Grigley
Contributions by Shaun Leonardo
Contributions by Tony Lewis
Contributions by Nyeema Morgan
Contributions by Gala Porras-Kim


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  • Ground-breaking new research offers a contribution to the field of perception in contemporary art
  • Accompanies an exhibition of the same name at the Bowdoin College Museum of Art (1 March - 3 June 2018)
Full Description

Featuring sculptural, sound-based, and language-based artworks, this fascinating volume explores the experiential, psychological, and metaphorical implications of blindness and invisibility in recent American art. New research addresses the paradox of why and how numerous sighted and unsighted artists, normally considered to be ‘visual artists’ such as William Anastasi, Robert Morris, Joseph Grigely and Lorna Simpson, have challenged the primacy of vision as a bearer of perceptual authority. Their work explores what resides on the other side of the visual field, prompting audiences to reflect upon the significance of what we cannot see, whether by choice, habit or physiological limitations, in the world around us. In so doing, they point to ways of knowing beyond what can be observed with the eyes, as well as to the invisible forces (societal, political, cultural) that govern our own frameworks of experience.

About the Author

Ellen Y. Tani is the Andrew W. Mellon Postdoctoral Curatorial Fellow at the Bowdoin College Museum of Art. She received her PhD in Art & Art History from Stanford University. Amanda Cachia is an independent curator and critic from Sydney, Australia. She received her PhD in Art History, Theory & Criticism from the University of California, San Diego.

Scala Arts & Heritage Publishers
15th Mar 2018
250 mm x 210 mm
112 Pages
45 color
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