Bart Farell

Research Associate Professor

Biomedical & Chemical Engineering


  • Ph.D., McGill University
  • B.A., University of California, Berkeley

Lab/Center Affiliation(s):

  • Institute for Sensory Research

Research Interests:

  • Spatial vision
  • Binocular vision and stereopsis
  • Color perception

Current Research:

Light from the environment is imaged on the two-dimensional retinas and gives rise to the experience of seeing the world of objects in three dimensions. I study the mechanisms that the human visual system uses to construct these objects of perception and their spatial arrangement. Current research is directed toward understanding the mechanisms of stereoscopic depth perception, of the perception of motion and of surface brightness, and demarcating the limits of attention. The methods used are those of psychophysics, which aim to uncover the functional mechanisms of vision by measuring how task performance varies with the properties of the stimulus and the state of the observer. Computer simulation and modeling are also used in comparing theory with behavior, and imaging and animal physiology data are used to connect psychophysical results to biological mechanisms that might support them. Biologically inspired machine-vision algorithms allow us to implement the lab’s findings in artificial systems in order to take advantage of strategies evolution has shaped for dealing optimally with the visual world.

Courses Taught:

  • NEU 613: Readings in Neuroscience

Selected Publications:

Fernandez, J. M. and Farell, B. (2009). Is perceptual space inherently non-Euclidean? Journal of Mathematical Psychology, 53, 86-91.

Fernandez, J. M. and Farell, B. (2009). A new theory of structure-from-motion perception. Journal of Vision, 9, 1–20.

Chai, Y.-C. & Farell, B. (2009). From disparity to depth: How to make a grating and a plaid appear in the same depth plane. Journal of Vision, 9, 1–19.

Farell, B., Chai, Y.-C. & Fernandez, J. M. (2009). Projected disparity, not horizontal disparity, predicts stereo depth of 1-D patterns. Vision Research, 49, 2209–2216.

PeIli, D. G., & Farell, B. (2010). Psychophysical methods. In M. Bass, C. DeCusatis, J. Enoch, V. Lakshminarayanan, G. Li, C. MacDonald, V. Mahajan & E. V. Stryland (Eds.), Handbook of Optics. Third Edition, Volume III: Vision and Vision Optics (pp. 3.1-3.12). New York: McGraw-Hill.

Kornreich, P. & Farell, B. (2013). True three-dimensional camera. Journal of Electronic Imaging, 22, 013028-1-14.

Farell, B. (2015). The perception of symmetry in depth: effect of symmetry plane orientation. Symmetry, 7, 336-353.

Farell, B. & Ng, C. J. (2014). Perceived depth in non-transitive stereo displays. Vision Research, 105, 137–150.