Journal of Philosophical Investigations

Document Type : Research Paper


1 MA of Art Research, Art University of Isfahan, Isfahan, Iran

2 Associate Professor of Art Research Department, Art University of Isfahan, Isfahan, Iran

3 Assistant Professor of Graphics Department, Art University of Isfahan, Isfahan, Iran


Many attempts to understand the nature of perception and its phenomena have been the result of the thoughts of phenomenologists and Gestalt psychologists. Maurice Merleau-Ponty and Rudolph Arnheim are two of the prominent philosophers and theorists in this field, who’s their opinions are influenced by Gestalt school with a phenomenological approach.
The present article aims at achieving a broad cognition of the nature of perception by comparing the opinions of these two philosophers and analyzes these implications in the field of art education.
This research was carried out with phenomenological approach, using an analytically-comparative method and utilizing authentic documents and library resources.
The findings of the study show that Merleau-Ponty and Arnheim share the same thoughts, they believe that in visual perception, contrary to the dualistic doctrines of Descartes, the essence of the inner and outer world (subject & object) takes the form of a gestalt in the interplay between different forces and it is through this intertwining of the organism with the perceived world and it,s possible to understand the real thing. Also, by relying on this overall structure, we can achieve the meanings and Visual expression that there are in vision and visual arts as communication tools of artist. Therefore, the necessity of creating and understanding an artwork is the mental ability to understand these integrated and meaningful structures, which doubles the excellent understanding of visual phenomena in art education.


Main Subjects

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