The work of Jan Evangelista Purkinje (1787-1869), especially his study of
subjective visual phenomena, was recently identified with the dawning of
neuroscience (Wade and Brozek, 2001). But Purkinje's observations and
experiments also foreshadowed the rise of modern art and new media such as
cinema. For instance, in the 1820s and 1830s, he analysed the role of frame
and texture in the perception of a painting as an object and
representation, which was used by the Impressionists several decades later.
He also described abstract art and predicted its future boom as early as
1819. In 1865 he envisioned the medium of cinema and its wide range of
applications. While overlooked or forgotten, these Purkinje's
groundbreaking contributions demonstrate how the emerging fields of
neuroscience, modern art and new media were interconnected.