chapter  10
C. S. Peirce and the Teaching of Drawing
BySeymour Simmons
Pages 13

This chapter reviews the forms and functions of drawing in the work of Charles Sanders Peirce, then considers implications of Peirce’s work for teaching drawing at the university level and in general education, K–12. It argues that the restoration of drawing depends on getting art teachers and others to recognize drawing’s contribution to cognition. Peirce’s research on bistable images provides evidence of critical cognitive functions involved in interpreting drawings. The chapter discusses Peirce’s pragmatism and semeiotics offer theoretical frameworks to help explain how drawing serves cognition. Reading Peirce is hard for almost everyone, at least at first, and understanding can be still more challenging for those lacking a background in philosophy. Peirce himself was not above occasionally drawing conventional images such as hearts and moons. Drawing instructors, especially at the post-secondary level, should find appropriate ways to talk about the points just listed with their students, complementing the discussion with visual examples to illustrate each concept.