Gianni Barchiesi

PhD Candidate

Gianni Barchiesi


Title: How the perceptual experience of cinema echoes our lives as perceivers in action

Supervisor: Antonia Lant

The purpose of this dissertation is to 1) explore and describe the general qualities of our perceptual experiences of cinema through the tools of the enactive theory of perception, and 2) to use said qualities to present the type of perceptual experience that cinema can afford us as specific of this medium. A series of examples of films will be used to corroborate these claims, as well as a comparative analysis between the qualities of our cinematic experiences, and those of our experiences of videogames.


I am an ABD PhD student in the Cinema Studies Department here at NYU, which I joined after I got my Bachcelor and Master degrees in Italy from Universita degli Studi Roma Tre. My major areas of interest and research all invest the intersection between film theory and works in perception studies, these latter ranging from philosophy to neuroscience. I have also written/been writing about the works of Woody and Steina Vasulka, the challenges posed to authorship by Lars von Trier's The Boss of It All, the technology of Ambient Occlusion in CGI and its impact on assessing verisimilitude in digital imagery, and about the influence of models in hard science-based film theory. I am completely in love with the cinema of David Lynch, and with the world of Disney's Tron.