Hemispheric asymmetry of liking for representational and abstract paintings

Marcos Nadal, Susanna Schiavi, Zaira Cattaneo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Although the neural correlates of the appreciation of aesthetic qualities have been the target of much research in the past decade, few experiments have explored the hemispheric asymmetries in underlying processes. In this study, we used a divided visual field paradigm to test for hemispheric asymmetries in men and women's preference for abstract and representational artworks. Both male and female participants liked representational paintings more when presented in the right visual field, whereas preference for abstract paintings was unaffected by presentation hemifield. We hypothesize that this result reflects a facilitation of the sort of visual processes relevant to laypeople's liking for art-specifically, local processing of highly informative object features-when artworks are presented in the right visual field, given the left hemisphere's advantage in processing such features.

Original languageEnglish
JournalPsychonomic Bulletin and Review
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - Oct 13 2017


Dive into the research topics of 'Hemispheric asymmetry of liking for representational and abstract paintings'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this