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The Art of JAMA |

Taïmyr Victor Vasarely

Carrie A. Butt
JAMA. 2016;315(23):2502-2503. doi:10.1001/jama.2015.14320.
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Upon approaching a work of art, there is an expectation that an experience will be had. Most likely, we anticipate an emotion: sadness, awe, delight, comedy, repulsion, even disappointment if our expectation is not met. Less expected is an uncontrolled physiologic response, an effect that makes the viewer disoriented. This was a key feature of artists working under the Op-Art moniker in the 1960s. They used a simple vocabulary of basic forms and colors, but created visually complicated works that engendered a novel and involuntary frequency between art and viewer. Consequently, their works defined the experience of art as something more empirical than emotional.

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Victor Vasarely (1906-1997), Taïmyr, 1958, Hungarian/French. Oil on canvas. 162 × 130 cm. Courtesy of the National Galleries of Scotland (https://www.nationalgalleries.org/), Edinburgh; purchased 1973, GMA 1279. © 2016 Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York, New York/ADAGP, Paris, France.

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