Perspectives is the Violette de Mazia Foundations online source for intelligent discussion about the arts. Perspectives presents an ever evolving dialogue regarding our experience with the arts and the important role they play in our everyday lives.  Perspectives will offer readers food for thought but the heart of the site is an ongoing engagement with the art experience through reviews, essays, and reflections.

Feature Title Feature Type Description
Neuroaesthetics: Researchers unravel the biology of beauty and art. Articles

Scientists are in search of a neurological explanation for how we experience and produce art. Can neuroscience tell us anything about beauty?.

How Philosophy Makes Progress Articles

An ascendant view holds that while philosophy may pose important questions, progress isn’t possible until science provides answers. That view is wrong...

Epic Fail: ‘The Rise’ and ‘The Up Side of Down’ Reviews

To fail is to be human. So, by all means, fail better. Learn from the experience, embrace it. But what, exactly, does it mean to fail?

The Spirit of Youth - What was so new about Futurism? Exhibitions

The Italian Futurists yelled and screamed about the radically new, but in many ways they simply wanted to go back home.

Despite What You've Been Told, You Aren't 'Left-Brained' or 'Right-Brained' Articles

The brain is more complex than corporate team-building exercises suggest, but the myth is unlikely to die anytime soon. A new two-year study found no evidence that participants had a stronger left or right-sided brain network.

Film as Film - What’s the Point of Movie Criticism? Articles

Why do critics insist on interpreting even masterpieces like Rear Window as if they were little different to plays that simply happen to be screened in cinemas?

One More Time Articles

Why do we listen to our favourite music over and over again? Because repeated sounds work magic in our brains.

Scientism in the Arts and Humanities Articles

Here come the neurothugs, and Roger Scruton is ready for battle. Can neuroscience tell us anything meaningful about the nature and meaning of art?

Is Death Bad for You? Articles

We all believe that death is bad. But why is death bad?

But is it art? On Art: Context, Meaning, and Vandalism Articles

Are Marcel Duchamp's "readymades,"...critical pranks that show how arbitrary is the marriage of object and meaning or intent in traditional artworks?

Illicit Intermissions - Dance and Literature Reviews

Samuel Beckett, a fanatic for stage direction, drew on Eurhythmy, music hall, ballet. He wasn’t alone. For modernists, movement was everything. Where is the equivalent to Adorno on Stravinsky and Schoenberg? Where are the monographs to match those on Cubism, or the modern novel?

Whistler’s Battles Reviews


Ambitious beneath his pose of indolence, James McNeill Whistler was the most contradictory of artists.

Keep Smiling - For the Origins of the Selfie, Look to the Dandy. Articles

Loathe the selfie? Don’t blame the Kardashians. Its roots originate in the 19th century, with silk-waistcoated Parisian dandies...

La Bella Vita Articles

True beauty pleases the eye and the mind – but can it help us to become better people?

The Connoisseur: Bernard Berenson and the Appreciation of Art Reviews

I wanted to become and be a work of art myself.

The Joy of Literary Destruction: Writers Who Broke All the Rules Articles

The pantheon of literature is full of authors who gleefully tore down everything that came before them

Modern Art: I Could Have Done That...So I Did Exhibitions

After years of going to photography exhibitions and thinking he could do better, Julian Baggini gave it a go. But could he convince The Royal West of England Academy with his work?

Over Our Dead Bodies Articles

When the attention to intellectual production goes, so too does our ability to understand the equally fraught process of intellectual reception.

Technology in museums – less is more! Articles

The drive to 'engage' patrons with gadgets strips museums of their innate wonder.

What Is Art For? Articles

What Is Art For? - To help us live better, more flourishing lives.