Ben van Buren
Assistant Professor of Psychology (CSD)
G - 80 Fifth Avenue
Ben studies the perception of higher-level visual properties. What causes objects to look more or less alive, emotionally expressive, or aesthetically pleasing? His research connects these features of visual experience with aspects of our mental lives that are better understood by psychologists, such as attention, perceptual organization, and memory. Ben's recent projects have focused on the perception of intentionality from motion cues, the perception of physical forces, event perception, and the psychology of aesthetics. He has also written about what visual illusions tell us about our mental architecture, and about meta-psychological questions, such as how to best study perceptual states.
Ben directs the NSSR Perception Laboratory. For the latest information on lab news and projects, please visit: http://www.nssrperception.com/
Ph.D., Cognitive Psychology (Yale University)
B.A., Cognitive Science, Philosophy (University of Pennsylvania)
Nguyen, H. B., and van Buren, B. (under review). May the Force be against you: Better
sensitivity to speed changes opposite gravity.
van Buren, B., and Scholl, B. J. (under review). The ‘Blindfold Test’ for deciding
whether an effect reflects visual processing or higher-level judgment.
van Buren, B., and Scholl, B. J. (under review). Who’s chasing whom?: Changing background motion reverses impressions of chasing in perceived animacy.
Colombatto, C., van Buren, B., and Scholl, B. J. (2021). Hidden intentions: Visual awareness prioritizes directed attention even without eyes or faces. Cognition, 217, 1-7. PDF
Ritchie, J. B., and van Buren, B. (2020). When scenes look like Materials: The reversable figure-ground motif in the paintings of René Magritte. Art and Perception, 8, 1-12. PDF
van Buren, B., and Scholl, B. J. (2018). Visual illusions as a tool for dissociating seeing from thinking. Perception, 47, 999-1001. PDF
van Buren, B., and Scholl, B. J. (2017). Minds in motion in memory: Enhanced spatial memory driven by the perceived animacy of simple shapes. Cognition, 163, 87-92. PDF | Demos
van Buren, B., Bromberger, B., Potts, D., and Chatterjee, A. (2013). Changes in painting styles of two artists with Alzheimer's disease. Psychology of Aesthetics, Creativity, and the Arts, 7, 89-94. PDF
perception, cognition, animacy, event perception, gestalt psychology, aesthetics, visual science of art
Fund. of Visual Perception
LPSY 2038, Fall 2022