Article published in:The Conversation Frame: Forms and functions of fictive interaction
Edited by Esther Pascual and Sergeiy Sandler
[Human Cognitive Processing 55] 2016
► pp. 87–109
Silent abstractions versus “Look at me” drawings
Corpus evidence that artworks’ subject matter affects their fictive speech
Artworks can be said to metaphorically “speak” to their viewers (Sullivan 2006, 2009) in a form of fictive interaction (Pascual 2002). The current study examines the fictive speech of different types of artworks in a corpus of 1,105 examples extracted from DeviantART, the world’s largest online artwork community. In the corpus, abstract artworks are less often presented as “speaking” directly than figurative artworks. That is, a figurative painting might say, “Look at me!” in directly presented speech, whereas an abstract work is more likely to scream for attention without any direct speech attributed to the artwork. I suggest three reasons for this disparity. I also find that artworks depicting named characters participate in fictive conversations not shared by other works.
Keywords: corpus linguistics, fictive interaction, indirect speech, metaphor, visual art
Published online: 01 November 2016
Salah, A.A., Salah, A.A., Buter, B., Dijkshoorn, N., Modolo, D., Nguyen, Q., van Noort, S., & van de Poel, B.
Salah, A.A., & Salah, A.A.
(2006) How does art ‘speak’ and what does it ‘say’: Conceptual metaphor theory as a tool for understanding the artistic process. In D.E. Boyes & F.B. Cogan (Eds.), Thought tools for a new generation: Essays on thought, ideas, and the power of expression (pp. 81–89). Eugene, OR: Robert D. Clark Honors College.
Cited by other publications
Pascual, Esther & Emilia Królak
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