Gombrich/Gibson dispute

(Richard Woodfield) Introduction to the debate

Note (02.03.2021): It is very important to say that while Gombrich has frequently been said to subscribe to this or that psychological theory (for example, Gestalt or New Look Psychology), this is categorically not the case. He makes use of the observations used by those theories, which is different from accepting those theories themselves. He constantly invited his readers to share in the observational process. Unlike the psychological theories, which have become dated, those observations are standing the text of time.

The Evidence of Images: I The Variability of Vision C.S. Singleton (ed), Interpretation: Theory and Practice, 1969, pp.35-68 [Trapp no.1969C.1]

(James J. Gibson) The Information Available in Pictures, Leonardo, Vol. 4, 1971, pp.27-35.

(with J.J. Gibson & R. Arnheim) Exchange of Letters, Leonardo, Vol. 4, 1971, pp.195-203 [Trapp no.1971D.1]

The ‘What’ and the ‘How’: Perspective Representation and the Phenomenal World R Rudner and I Scheffler (eds), Logic and Art: Essays in Honor of Nelson Goodman, 1972, pp.129-49 [Trapp no.1972G.1]

Illusion and Art R. Gregory and E.H. Gombrich (ed), Illusion in Nature and Art, London, 1973. [Trapp no.1973C.1]

‘The sky is the limit’; The Vault of Perception and Pictorial Vision, Perception: Essays in Honor of J.J. Gibson, Ithaca and London, 1974. [Trapp no.1974F.1]

(James J. Gibson) The ecological approach to the visual perception of pictures, Leonardo, 1978, 11, pp.227-235.

(including N Goodman) Letters, Leonardo, Vol. 12, 1979, pp.174-176 [Trapp no.1979M.1]

(David R. Topper) Art in the Realist Ontology of J.J. Gibson, Synthese, 1983, pp.71-83.

Letter to Prof. David Topper, 1986

Western Art and the Perception of Space, Space in European Art, Council of Europe Exhibition, Japan, 1987, pp.5-12 [Trapp no.1987G(ENG).1] See also the video

Voir la nature, voir les peintures, Les Cahiers du Musée National de l’Art Moderne, Vol. 24, 1988, pp.21-43 [Trapp no.1988J.1] See also the connected Architectural Association video Ernst Gombrich – Representations of Space in Western Art

Review of James J. Gibson and the Psychology of Perception by Edward S. Reed, New York Review of Books, January 19th, 1989, pp.13-15 [Trapp no.1989T.1]

Preface to Art and Illusion 2000, Princeton University Press, 2000. [Trapp no.1960A.30]