Influence of aesthetic perception on visual event-related potentials

Consciousness and Cognition 17 (3):933-945 (2008)
Abstract
The aim of the study was to assess the effects of visual aesthetic perception on event-related potentials . Eight subjects assigned an aesthetic judgment and a 10-step beauty estimation to the target stimuli, consisting of famous artistic pictures and geometric shapes. In a further task, the subjects performed a motor response to the previously judged pictures and geometric shapes. ERPs were recorded through 54 scalp electrodes during both tasks. The P3b amplitude was increased during the categorization of the geometric shapes compared to the artistic figures and during the vision of the beautiful targets preceding the motor response. The categorization of the aesthetic qualities of geometrical shapes seems to induce a higher level of attention, while a higher arousal variation was elicited by the recognition of beauty, in any form that was presented
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