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The Influence of Art Expertise and Training on Emotion and Preference Ratings for Representational and Abstract Artworks.

van Paasschen J, Bacci F, Melcher DP - PLoS ONE (2015)

Bottom Line: Results showed that art experts rated the artworks higher than novices on aesthetic facets (beauty and wanting), but no group differences were observed on affective evaluations (valence and arousal).The training session made a small effect on ratings of preference compared to the non-trained group of novices.Overall, these findings are consistent with the idea that affective components of art appreciation are less driven by expertise and largely consistent across observers, while more cognitive aspects of aesthetic viewing depend on viewer characteristics such as art expertise.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Center for Mind / Brain Sciences (CIMeC), University of Trento, Rovereto, Italy.

ABSTRACT
Across cultures and throughout recorded history, humans have produced visual art. This raises the question of why people report such an emotional response to artworks and find some works more beautiful or compelling than others. In the current study we investigated the interplay between art expertise, and emotional and preference judgments. Sixty participants (40 novices, 20 art experts) rated a set of 150 abstract artworks and portraits during two occasions: in a laboratory setting and in a museum. Before commencing their second session, half of the art novices received a brief training on stylistic and art historical aspects of abstract art and portraiture. Results showed that art experts rated the artworks higher than novices on aesthetic facets (beauty and wanting), but no group differences were observed on affective evaluations (valence and arousal). The training session made a small effect on ratings of preference compared to the non-trained group of novices. Overall, these findings are consistent with the idea that affective components of art appreciation are less driven by expertise and largely consistent across observers, while more cognitive aspects of aesthetic viewing depend on viewer characteristics such as art expertise.

No MeSH data available.


Examples of paradigm and stimulus material used in the laboratory session.(A) The experimental paradigm used in session I (laboratory session). (B) Examples of the stimuli. The top row shows examples of Geometric Abstraction (left) and Abstract Expressionism (right) artworks, while the bottom row shows sample portraits.
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pone.0134241.g001: Examples of paradigm and stimulus material used in the laboratory session.(A) The experimental paradigm used in session I (laboratory session). (B) Examples of the stimuli. The top row shows examples of Geometric Abstraction (left) and Abstract Expressionism (right) artworks, while the bottom row shows sample portraits.

Mentions: The first session was always held in the laboratory, where participants were asked to rate a set of paintings (i.e. half of the complete stimulus set) presented on a computer screen on the four different dimensions described in the previous section. Participants were randomly assigned to rate artworks from either set 1 or set 2, as described above. Participants completed the art expertise questionnaire and a short practice with a different set of stimuli before engaging in the actual task. Each trial started with a fixation cross, presented for 500 ms in the centre of the screen. Above the fixation cross we provided a cue with regard to which type of dimension the participant would be rating the painting on, for example ‘happy / sad’ served as a cue for the Valence dimension. The artwork was then presented for 2000 ms, during which time it was not possible to make a response. Next, a rating screen appeared, stating the dimension and a scale from 1 to 7 with a written description provided for each extreme of the scale. The experimental paradigm is illustrated in Fig 1.


The Influence of Art Expertise and Training on Emotion and Preference Ratings for Representational and Abstract Artworks.

van Paasschen J, Bacci F, Melcher DP - PLoS ONE (2015)

Examples of paradigm and stimulus material used in the laboratory session.(A) The experimental paradigm used in session I (laboratory session). (B) Examples of the stimuli. The top row shows examples of Geometric Abstraction (left) and Abstract Expressionism (right) artworks, while the bottom row shows sample portraits.
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4526639&req=5

pone.0134241.g001: Examples of paradigm and stimulus material used in the laboratory session.(A) The experimental paradigm used in session I (laboratory session). (B) Examples of the stimuli. The top row shows examples of Geometric Abstraction (left) and Abstract Expressionism (right) artworks, while the bottom row shows sample portraits.
Mentions: The first session was always held in the laboratory, where participants were asked to rate a set of paintings (i.e. half of the complete stimulus set) presented on a computer screen on the four different dimensions described in the previous section. Participants were randomly assigned to rate artworks from either set 1 or set 2, as described above. Participants completed the art expertise questionnaire and a short practice with a different set of stimuli before engaging in the actual task. Each trial started with a fixation cross, presented for 500 ms in the centre of the screen. Above the fixation cross we provided a cue with regard to which type of dimension the participant would be rating the painting on, for example ‘happy / sad’ served as a cue for the Valence dimension. The artwork was then presented for 2000 ms, during which time it was not possible to make a response. Next, a rating screen appeared, stating the dimension and a scale from 1 to 7 with a written description provided for each extreme of the scale. The experimental paradigm is illustrated in Fig 1.

Bottom Line: Results showed that art experts rated the artworks higher than novices on aesthetic facets (beauty and wanting), but no group differences were observed on affective evaluations (valence and arousal).The training session made a small effect on ratings of preference compared to the non-trained group of novices.Overall, these findings are consistent with the idea that affective components of art appreciation are less driven by expertise and largely consistent across observers, while more cognitive aspects of aesthetic viewing depend on viewer characteristics such as art expertise.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Center for Mind / Brain Sciences (CIMeC), University of Trento, Rovereto, Italy.

ABSTRACT
Across cultures and throughout recorded history, humans have produced visual art. This raises the question of why people report such an emotional response to artworks and find some works more beautiful or compelling than others. In the current study we investigated the interplay between art expertise, and emotional and preference judgments. Sixty participants (40 novices, 20 art experts) rated a set of 150 abstract artworks and portraits during two occasions: in a laboratory setting and in a museum. Before commencing their second session, half of the art novices received a brief training on stylistic and art historical aspects of abstract art and portraiture. Results showed that art experts rated the artworks higher than novices on aesthetic facets (beauty and wanting), but no group differences were observed on affective evaluations (valence and arousal). The training session made a small effect on ratings of preference compared to the non-trained group of novices. Overall, these findings are consistent with the idea that affective components of art appreciation are less driven by expertise and largely consistent across observers, while more cognitive aspects of aesthetic viewing depend on viewer characteristics such as art expertise.

No MeSH data available.