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The Science Behind Art Appreciation And Brain Stimulation

painting from Artecasso

Art is a visual medium like no other. Beautiful art can transport you to faraway lands or into the distant past in a matter of seconds. Looking intently at a wall art can evoke strong emotions or emotions and even inspire creativity within ourselves. Although everyone responds differently to art, there is no doubt as to its impact on our brain and consciousness.

Studies show that art appreciation is a powerful tool that can stimulate and engage our brains. The viewing, analyzing, or creating art can stimulate the brain with long-term benefits. Scientific evidence points out that looking at wall art can impact the brain wave patterns, the nervous system and even raise serotonin levels in your body. For this reason, many experts recommend art education as a proven therapy method that can help improve one's social and emotional development to academic achievement. In this article, we will discover more about the impact of art, specifically wall art such as canvas paintings and unique prints, and how viewing or creating them helps keep your brain active and healthy.

Wall art and your brain- A unique relationship

Today, experts believe that art is a vital component of health and wellness. Not only is it an outlet to explore one’s creativity, but also surrounding yourself with wonderfully depicted wall art can open up your mind and stimulate deeper thoughts.

For instance, when you look at the canvas painting of a flower in full bloom, you are not actually looking at a flower. Even so, your brain will tell you to recognize it as a flower. How does it happen?

In reality, our brain has an innate ability to identify patterns and discrete familiarity from abstract forms and incomplete information. This is how we look at a piece of wall art and perceive an image that makes sense to us. The visual information our brain receives on seeing a canvas painting or a printed image is compared with the information we have already gathered and stored in our memory. This is how wall art stimulates the brain- by organizing and recognizing patterns and shapes we see on the piece and helping us make sense of it, thereby allowing us to enjoy it.

Apart from gathering information and making sense of the imagery, our brain also undergoes some physical changes when viewing and appreciating a beautiful piece of art. Research tells us that the blood flow to the brain increases by as much as 10% when we look at a painting, print, or sculpture- almost equivalent to looking at a loved one.

When we view an art piece, especially a painting, we are not just trying to make sense of it. Our brain is simultaneously allowing us to immerse ourselves in the image. This process is called embodied cognition, where the neurons in the brain turn the visual information you see in the canvas painting into actual emotions. The more you look at a piece, the more you feel yourself going into the art. And when this happens, you may start sensing the ideas and emotions the painting is trying to communicate with you at a cognitive level.

Viewing and appreciating art

Learning to understand and appreciate wall art is key to keeping your brain active and involved. To analyze an art and put your brain to use, you can try a few simple exercises like-

  • When viewing a canvas painting or print, describe what you see and feel
  • Think about what the artist is trying to communicate through the painting. Put yourself in their shoe
  • Compare the subject of the art with contemporary ideas or what’s happening in society presently
  • Discuss the theme of the art with other enthusiasts and compare it with other works you like or your own life experiences

Art appreciating is an acquired skill that comes through practice. To truly appreciate art, you need to be an expert. All you need is a good eye and interest in learning about art. Exercises like these where you analyze art can improve your analytical and problem-solving skills and keep your mind alert even as you age.

How to surround you with art

If you want to surround yourself with art, especially wall art, here is what we suggest-

  • Visit local museums or art galleries where there are different kinds of paintings, prints and other visual arts are exhibited. You can visit with your friends or partner for a more interesting and interactive experience.
  • Watch documentaries and read books about art to educate yourself. Learning about different artists, styles and techniques will help you understand and appreciate art better.
  • Create art by taking up painting or sculpting classes. Painting classes especially are fun and keep you interested in creating unique pieces of wall art that can communicate everything you want to express that words cannot.
  • Buy wall art for your home and office space. Hanging wall art, especially canvas paintings and unique canvas prints that you find interesting is a great way to surround yourself with art and get your daily dose of art viewing and brain stimulation.

Looking to buy wall art for your space? Check out our latest collection of handmade paintings and limited edition canvas prints today!

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