Aesthetic appreciation is part of our everyday life: it is a subjective judgment we make when looking at a painting, a landscape, or-in fact-at another person. Neuroimaging and electrophysiological evidence suggests that the left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) plays a critical role in aesthetic judgments. Here, we show that the experience of beauty can be artificially enhanced with brain stimulation. Specifically, we show that aesthetic appreciation of representational paintings and photographs can be increased by applying anodal (excitatory) transcranial direct current stimulation on the left DLPFC. Our results thus show that beauty is in the brain of the beholder, and offer a novel view on the neural networks underlying aesthetic appreciation.
- Brain stimulation
- Dorsolateral prefrontal cortex
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cognitive Neuroscience
- Experimental and Cognitive Psychology