ways of seeing

  1. One of the first points John Berger makes is that the act of seeing something is not as objective as we might at first think. Instead, he argues that what we see is conditioned by habits and conventions. What does Berger mean when he says that the process of seeing is not “natural,” that it is shaped by habits and conventions? What kinds of habits and conventions shape the ways we see and how do they do this? Why is this significant when we think about what artworks like paintings mean for viewers?


Because everyone grows up in a different living environment, it can make us see things in different ways and express them differently. Cultural background and the living background will affect our ideas. Works of art mean that the audience can objectively feel the artist’s life or the feelings they want to express, and can also be used to inherit and teach us some experiences and lessons


  1. According to Berger, how has the camera changed our senses of perception? How has this device changed our engagement with works of art? Conversely, Berger describes the experience of being in the presence of an authentic artwork–at a museum, for instance–in terms of “stillness” and “silence.” What does he mean by this? According to Berger, why is seeing an artwork in a museum different from seeing it on a screen or in a book?


The appearance of the camera has changed our perception because the camera can copy the painting so that everyone can see it, but the camera can’t copy all the details. Some pictures can only show a part of the painting. Now we can easily watch the painting at any place and time. So we also reduce the number of exhibitions and museums. Because it’s very convenient to see on the mobile phone Any painting you want to see. However, the details and emotions that can only be found in the original works cannot be transmitted through the copied pictures


  1. What does Berger mean when he describes reproductions of paintings becoming a “form of information?” Paraphrase what he means by his idea of “talking with reproductions.” What is the significance of this?


I think the form of information is an important way to spread and teach the people knowledge. But it’s not an art, and people can’t learn or feel more real things from the screen.


4 thoughts on “ways of seeing

  1. Dilora Kabilova

    I agree, reproductions cannot replace the originals, but through reproductions, we can learn and discover the incredible world of art. Through books and online resources, we can learn about the history of art.

  2. Bella Acero

    I agree, I believe that ones background really influences the way they see things in life. It can make them very bias in certain situations, possibility leading the to be closed minded.

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