Sligo Abbey, Ireland

The Photograph

A cup o' coffee on a snowy January morning


My photo
Current: Danbury, CT, United States
Welcome! A few years ago, I discovered an application that artists employ in their works to bring cultural awareness to their audiences. Having discerned this semiotic theory that applies to literature, music, art, film, and the media, I have devoted the blog, "Theory of Iconic Realism" to explore this theory. The link to the publisher of my book is below. If you or your university would like a copy of this book for your library or if you would like to review it for a scholarly journal, please contact the Edwin Mellen Press at the link listed below. Looking forward to hearing from you!

Thank you for visiting. I hope you will find the information insightful. ~ Dr. Jeanne Iris
To view my page on the Edwin Mellen Press website, please click below:


I have demonstrated or will demonstrate the application of this theory at the following locations:
April, 2016 @ University of Notre Dame:
A 'Daughter of Attila' Speaks: The Semiotic Theory of Iconic Realism in the Cultural Identity of Irish Celts and Magyars
November, 2016 @ Massachusetts Maritime Academy:
"A Terrible Beauty is Born"...The Semiotic Theory of Iconic Realism and William Butler Yeats' poem, Easter 1916
Dates pending: I will present the theory of iconic realism at universities and art institutes which have purchased my book.

14 October, 2015

Jeanne D'Arc and Iconic Realism

 Joan of Arc's Death at the Stake,                                       
 by Hermann Stilke (1803–1860)                            

     With Halloween and All Saints Day soon arriving,  I thought I'd post on my patron saint, Jeanne D'Arc. I've chosen two images of this saint, a painting and the cover of a video game to illustrate iconic realism.
     Images merge within this painting of Jeanne D’Arc to provide an interpretation that represents the presence of hope that humanity, with all its industry, will recognize the value in the temporal nature of innocence. Interpretation of this work of art may include a variety of perspectives to complement the number of viewers of the specific art. At this moment of perception, then, the artist and the viewer become collaborators.
     Once this cognitive collaboration between artist and viewer occurs, the cultural interpretation begins to transform into a collection of new perspectives, based on the historicity of the viewers. Nicholas Davey states, “Hermeneutic thought articulates the conviction that art does not represent (vorstellen), copy or falsify the given world but allows that which is within the world to present (darstellen) or actualize itself (verwirklichen) more fully.” [1] New perceptions of a creative work shape newly actualized interpretations of the original work of art, which eventually become accepted interpretations of a community. Once the community recognizes these interpretations, the iconic becomes a reality.
     Through the establishment of an iconic figure within the consciousness of the community, an artist can then place this icon in a new reality that the community does not accept as the normal setting for this iconic figure. This placement allows the artist to make a statement that brings awareness to the community’s consciousness of an aspect within its culture that may need some attention.

[1] Davey, Nicholas. “Hermeneutics and Art Theory.” A Companion to Art Theory. eds. Paul  Smith and Carolyn Wilde. (Oxford: Blackwell, 2002) 149.

Emily Dickinson and Iconic Realism

Portrait of Emily Dickinson painted by William Rock
Chinese calligraphy painted by Huang Xiang 
Click HERE to go to their site. 

(calligraphy is from Dickinson's "The Soul selects Her Own Society,"
"My Life Closed Twice Before Its Close" and "Presentiment")
by Emily Dickinson

Calligraphy Translation:
The soul selects her own society,
Then shuts the door;
On her divine majority
Obtrude no more.
Unmoved, she notes the chariot's passing
At her low gate;
an emperor kneeling
Upon her mat.
I've known her from an ample nation
Choose one;
Then close the valves of her attention
Like stone.
I never saw a Moor

My life closed twice before its close;
It yet remains to see
If immortality unveil
A third event to me,
So huge, so hopeless to conceive,
As these that twice befell.
Parting is all we know of heaven,
And all we need of hell.

is that long shadow on the lawn
Indicative that sun goes down
The notice to the startled grass
That darkness is about to pass

By displaying the countenance of this reclusive poet in the midst of so many cultural icons, these two artists, Huang Xiang and William Rock, illustrate iconic realism of Emily Dickinson's poetry. In this painting by William Rock and the calligraphic representation by Huang Xiang, the iconic presence of Emily Dickinson's simplicity in connection with this honorable position illustrates her impact on human consciousness and the importance for humanity to look inward. Indeed, through her darkness, enlightenment has come to many. The use of blue and purple bring to mind the spirituality that surrounds this poet's expression: in her eyes, around the 'upper floor' of her mind and in her heart.