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Modes of address in pictorial art: an eye movement case study of Edouard Manet's painting A Bar at the Folies-Bergère to investigate art theories of absorption and viewer acknowledgment

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal article


  • Beth Harland
  • John Gillett
  • Carl M. Mann
  • Jason Kass
  • Hayward J. Godwin
  • Simon P. Liversedge
  • Nick Donnelly
<mark>Journal publication date</mark>06/2014
Number of pages8
Early online date1/08/13
<mark>Original language</mark>English


Art historical accounts of the last two hundred years identify developments in the types, or ‘modes’, of address that a picture can present to a viewer, as critical to the experience and evaluation of paintings. Here we focus on ‘anti-theatrical’ theories of pictorial address, and the complex and innovative ‘double relation’ of absorption and acknowledgment introduced by the painter Edouard Manet. We report a case study of Manet's A Bar at the Folies-Bergère investigating expert and novice spectators' eye movements and utterances in response to the painting to find evidence that viewers seek resolution of the complex ‘double relation’ that the theories describe.