The perceptual organization of visual objects: A microgenetic analysis

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Primed matching was used to examine the microgenesis of perceptual organization for line configurations that vary in the connectedness between their four line components, and for hierarchical patterns composed of four outline closed figures. The results for the line configurations showed that the configural organization of the disconnected line segments was available for priming very early, and its effect outweighed possible effects of the line components. An early relative dominance of the components was observed for the stimuli whose components were closed figures. These results suggest that uniform connectedness is not necessary for the designation of entry-level units. Disconnected line segments are rapidly organized into configurations, provided the presence of collinearity and/or closure. Closed figural elements are individuated early and are grouped into higher-level units with time. Copyright (C) 2000 Elsevier Science Ltd.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1333-1347
Number of pages15
JournalVision Research
Issue number10-12
StatePublished - Jun 2000

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research was supported partly by a grant from the Israel Foundations Trustees (1996–1998), partly by a grant from the Ebelin and Gerd Bucerius – ZEIT – Foundation, and partly by the Max Wertheimer Minerva Center for Cognitive Processes and Human Performance, University of Haifa. It was conducted at the Institute of Information Processing and Decision Making, University of Haifa, and the article was prepared during my sabbatical with the Department of Psychology, Carnegie Mellon University. I am indebted to Yaffa Lev for programming the experiments, and to Irene Apfeld, Limor Lavie, and Michal Inzelbuch for running the experiments. I thank Marlene Behrmann and two anonymous reviewers for their comments.


  • Early and late vision
  • Perceptual grouping
  • Perceptual organization
  • Uniform connectedness

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Sensory Systems
  • Ophthalmology

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