The Geometry of Brightness and the Perception of Form

  • Lois Swirnoff
Part of the Design Science Collection book series (DSC)


In the sensory world the perception of three-dimensional form depends upon the interplay of light and shadow. An angle forms precise visual patterns in ambient light, and these combined with their projected shapes can account for their reading as 90 degrees, 45 degrees, and so forth.


Degree Angle Interior Space Brightness Gradient Projected Shape Yellow Ochre 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 52.
    Carlo Pedretti in his Commentary to Jean Paul Richter’s The Literary Works of Leonardo da Vinci, 1977.Google Scholar
  2. 53.
    Albers made the distinction between what appears to be a local, retinal phenomenon, and an effect which takes place further in the visual system, which he termed, “perceptual. “ He much preferred this term to “optical,” adopted by the proponents of “Op” Art of the sixties, who attribute their work to his influence. “Perceptual” includes the influence of visual experience beyond the visual stimulus. In this instance, I think that the resolution of the effect lies in the propensity of the eye and brain to make ratios of the stimulus of light and to reduce the Svariables of hue.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1989

Authors and Affiliations

  • Lois Swirnoff
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Art, Design, and Art HistoryUniversity of California at Los AngelesLos AngelesUSA

Personalised recommendations