The Unity of Pictorial Experience


Seeing-in is the experience of seeing something in a picture. This experience is present to the subject as a single, unified experience. It is not like the disjoint experience of visualizing something into a scene that one perceives. This is so despite the fact that, like the latter experience, seeing-in is twofold: it involves being visually aware of two distinct objects – an array of ink-marks, on the one hand, and the depicted scene, on the other – and being aware of them in two distinct ways: while we see the ink-marks before us, our manner of visual awareness of the depicted object is not perceptual. In the first half of this paper, I offer an account of the subject’s sense of experiential unity in the face of twofoldness. In the paper’s second half, I demonstrate how my account of unity forces a considerable reconfiguration of the space of possible theories of seeing-in.

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Rose Ryan Flinn
New York University


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