Can the “two cultures” – the arts and sciences – collaborate for a common purpose? In this talk, John R. Blakinger explores artist, designer, and visual theorist György Kepes’s study of visual patterns in the arts and sciences, specifically focusing on Kepes’s 1951 exhibition and 1956 book The New Landscape. In these projects, Kepes compared a vast array of scientific images, among them microscopic minerals, cell structures, and electric discharges, with works of art. This talk will situate Kepes’s pedagogical mission – what he called the “education of vision” – in the fraught context of the Cold War.
John R. Blakinger is a PhD candidate at Stanford University and a Twenty-Four-Month Chester Dale Fellow at the Center for Advanced Study in the Visual Arts (CASVA) at the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C. He is completing a dissertation on Gyorgy Kepes’s career in the United States. As the first Andrew W. Mellon Curatorial Research Assistant at Stanford’s Cantor Arts Center, he organized the 2014 exhibition The New Landscape: Experiments in Light by Gyorgy Kepes, which presented photographic panels produced by Kepes for the first time in over sixty years. A version of the show, titled György Kepes: The New Landscape, will open at the Exhibition Research Centre at Liverpool John Moores University on Tuesday 14 April 2015.
In collaboration with Liverpool John Moores University.