Pinna, Baingio and Uccula, Arcangelo Francesco and Tanca, Maria (2010) How does the color influence figure and shape formation, grouping, numerousness and reading? The role of chromatic wholeness and fragmentation. Ophthalmic and Physiological Optics, Vol. 30 (5), p. 583-593. eISSN 1475-1313. Article.
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In this work it is suggested that color induces phenomenal wholeness, part-whole organization and fragmentation. The phenomenal wholeness subsumes the set of its main attributes: homogeneity, continuity, univocality, belongingness, and oneness. If color induces wholeness, it can also induce fragmentation. Therefore, in order to understand the role played by color within the process of part-whole organization, color is used both as a wholeness and as a fragmentation tool, thus operating synergistically or antagonistically with other wholeness processes. Therefore, color is expected to influence figure-ground segregation, grouping, shape formation and other visual processes that are related to the phenomenal wholeness. The purpose of this study is to rate the influence of color in inducing whole and part-whole organization and, consequently, in determining the perception of figure-ground segregation, grouping, shape formation, numerousness evaluation and time reading. We manipulated experimental conditions by using equiluminant colors to favor or break (parcel-out) the wholeness of objects like geometrical composite figures and words. The results demonstrated that color is aimed, among other psychological and biological purposes, at: (1) relating each chromatic component of an object, thus favoring the emergence of the whole object; (2) eliciting a part-whole organization, whose components are interdependent; (3) eliciting fragments and then breaking up the whole and favoring the emergence of single components. Wholeness, part-whole organization and fragmentation can be considered as three further purposes of color.
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