RSS Twitter iCal - Members: Login or Register Search

November 16, 2007, 7:00 PM

Perception and Imagination: Masters of the Senses

Participants: Greg Calbi, Sophia Grojsman, Mark Mitton (moderator), Nils Noren, Philip Pearlstein, Frank Wilson

Artists and craftspeople view the world in a unique way. This panel assembles specialists who satisfy and dazzle our senses. They will talk about what they have learned about perception and imagination from their work and their audience. What is the role of art and craft in what they do? When did they feel that they understood their art or craft? How do they know when their creations are right? What happens when their colleagues and audiences agree or disagree with them? How do specialists in one sense use the knowledge of the other senses in their creations? How does what they do affect that particular sense perception in daily life? Does focusing on one sense change the nature of their imaginations over time? How has technology changed the tradition that they work in? These are some of the questions that will be discussed in this roundtable.

Greg Calbi is a managing partner and mastering engineer at Sterling Sound in New York City. Mastering is the final stage of music production, during which final enhancement is added to the music to best project what the artist is trying to achieve. He has been mastering records since 1973, from the vinyl era with artists such as John Lennon, Paul Simon, James Taylor, and U2, to present-day CD mastering with Norah Jones, Michael Brecker, John Mayer, and Emmylou Harris. He has worked across all musical genres in mastering over 6500 albums.

Sophia Grojsman is Corporate Vice President and Senior Perfumer at International Flavors and Fragrances. She is the creator of Yves Saint Laurent's Paris, Calvin Klein's Eternity, Lancome's Trésor, and Estée Lauder's White Linen, among many other fragrances. In 1994 Ms. Grojsman received the Cosmetic Executive Women's Lifetime Achievement Award for her contributions to perfumery. In 1996, she was honored by the American Society of Perfumers with the Living Legend Award. Executive Women cited Sophia as "having created more fragrances sold today than any other perfumer in the history of mankind."

Mark Mitton (moderator) started doing magic tricks when he was nine years old and never stopped. He was the apprentice to legendary sleight-of-hand master and vaudevillian Slydini and studied Commedia dell'Arte in Italy, physical comedy with David Shiner, and ancient street performing arts in Japan. Mark is fascinated by using magic and crafts as a way to better understand how we all see the world. As a professional sleight-of-hand artist, he has performed for Benoit Mandelbrot, Roald Hoffmann, Salman Rushdie, Greg Maddux, Sienna Miller, John Mayer, Lil' Kim and many others; at festivals in Europe and Asia; at the Olympic Games; in war-torn Liberia and in hospital wards around New York City. This summer, he taught sleight-of-hand to Stanley Tucci and John Travolta for various film projects, and created magic for the Public Theater production of "A Midsummer Night's Dream" in Central Park.

Nils Noren is Vice President of Culinary Arts of The French Culinary Institute and The Italian Culinary Academy, both of which reside in New York City's International Culinary Center. He previously spent 10 years at Aquavit, where Marcus Samuelsson appointed him Executive Chef in 2003. A graduate of the Culinary School in Gavle, Sweden, Chef Nils is the embodiment of the new international chef: disciplined in the classic sensibilities and driven by immense creativity, calling on his earlier experience in Stockholm to show the world what Swedish food and cooking techniques are all about.

Philip Pearlstein is an innovative American painter, whose early work focused on landscapes of cliffs and rocks. In the early 1960s he began to make large-scale, realistic figure paintings at a time when abstract painting dominated the American art world. The startling realism of his work, along with its unsentimental emotional tone and connections to surrealism and graphic design, led famed critic Robert Hughes to describe his paintings as "unlike anything seen in American realism since Thomas Eakins." Mr. Pearlstein is also the President Emeritus of The American Academy of Arts and Letters.

Frank Wilson Frank Wilson is a neurologist and the author of two books on role of the hand in human life. The first, Tone Deaf and All Thumbs? concerns the neurological basis of human musical skill. The second, The Hand: How Its Use Shapes the Brain, Language, and Human Culture examines evidence from a variety of disciplines to refresh classical Greek and Darwinian ideas that link the hand to human intelligence and creativity. Published in German, Spanish, Japanese, and Chinese, The Hand was Pantheon's 1998 Pulitzer Prize nominee for general non-fiction. Dr. Wilson was Clinical Professor of Neurology at Stanford University Medical Center from 2001-2004.


Edited Transcript

PDF Version
Word Version


Discussion Board

This forum allows for an ongoing discussion of the above Philoctetes event. You may use this space to share your thoughts or to pose questions for panelists. An attempt will be made to address questions during the live event or as part of a continued online dialogue.

Post a Comment

(URLs will display as links.)
If you are a Philoctetes subscriber, please log in below to post to our event discussions. Or sign up now for a free subscription so you can post to our discussions and optionally receive our email announcements and our bi-monthly newsletter.
E-mail Address:
Password: (Forgot your password?)