Computer Grammars for the Syntactical Analysis of Paintings
Russell A. Kirsch, J Kirsch
How do we, as informed viewers, recognize an example of an artist?s work, a piece we have never seen before? We probably carry in our collection of visual memories, usually in some inarticulate fashion, a knowledge of formal regularities that an artist typically displays in his work. It is the syntactic nature of the work that we notice: the quality of lines, colors, shapes and their arrangements. We recognize paintings by what we see, not by what they mean. For example, we are little inclined to recognize a face by Modigliani or Soutine because one is serene and one is tortured (semantic qualities), but rather because each has a noticeably different technique for drawing and painting. Moreover, the way an artist treats a range of plastic opportunities, albeit handmaidens of meaning, will be his most enduring personal stamp. It is these plastic (syntactic) qualities, which can be expressed as a grammar, that we will address and explain in this paper.
and Kirsch, J.
Computer Grammars for the Syntactical Analysis of Paintings, World Art: Themes of Unity in Diversity, [online], https://tsapps.nist.gov/publication/get_pdf.cfm?pub_id=821719
(Accessed December 5, 2023)