Art, Humanities, and Neuroscience Project

The Italian Academy's Art, Humanities, and Neuroscience Project is one of the oldest cross-disciplinary programs of its kind in the world. It anticipated the current boom for interdisciplinary research linking neuroscience with the humanities and the social sciences by several years, both at Columbia and elsewhere.

Since 2001, the Academy has developed seminars and public events designed to spread word of the newest scientific advances and to bring together researchers in the sciences and the humanities. Highlights include the remarkable conference (led by the Academy's Director David Freedberg, with Arthur Danto and Nobel Laureate Eric R. Kandel) on responses to the visual arts; this Columbia Forum on Art and the New Biology of Mind welcomed artists Marina Abramovic, Laurie Anderson, David Salle, and others, along with many distinguished scientists. Further events have brought attention to the default mode network, the cell biology of neurodegeneration, music perception and music in rehabilitation, the sense of smell, and many other topics. (The full list is below.) This semester's event on attention and attunement can be seen in connection with an earlier event on vision, attention, and emotion.

The Academy also supports researchers doing ongoing studies (see the Art, Humanities, and Neuroscience Fellowships page), and the Academy's Director, Prof. Freedberg, teaches a course assessing the potential of the cognitive neurosciences to illuminate critical problems in the humanities and the history of art and images ("The Work of Art in the Age of Digital Reproducibility").

Humanities & Neuroscience Events

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