The Science of Art

By John Wright and Christian Montag

About the project

This project takes the form of an exhibition of photographic art, accompanied by questions designed to gauge your intellectual and emotional response. Following the exhibition, there is a brief survey designed to establish your personality type and your general view on visual arts.

Intention Vs Perception

In advance of the study, John - as the artist behind the photographs - noted down what his intention was with each piece of work. This information is shared on the feedback website at the end of this project. 

Using the data John and Christian collect via this website, they hope to gain an understanding of how individual differences in personality, (and aesthetic experience) relate to the diverse emotional responses while viewing John’s art. 

Personality and Emotion

The ways in which we “experience art” can be associated with aiding a deeper and fuller life experience. Our survey questions will help us assess the variables related to personality and emotion. 

Mindfulness and Time Distortion

Please know that the time you spend viewing each art piece will be tracked. Why is this done? It is well established that viewing art can go along with time distortions, the study will show us what personality types most strongly experience these “time distortions”. 

Art In The Covid Era

As we launch this project in early 2021, it would have been remiss of us not to explore how society’s experience of visual arts had altered or effected our relationship with viewing, experiencing and creating art. For that reason our project touches on questions of how your relationship with art may have changed.

What will Christian and John do after this project?

Beyond an exhibition with John’s arts together with results from this study (see below), it is possible that John and Christian write a book on this project or a scientific paper. Maybe they do all of it. 

Your Anonymity

Please be assured that your participation in this study will be completely anonymous. Identification is actually a hindrance to the collating of dependable socio-scientific data and we really DO NOT want to know who you are or what you did :)

What Do You Have To Do?

During your anonymous participation in this project, you will be asked to self-rate your personality and also to give insights into your general view on art photography and the aesthetic arts. Moreover, you will be asked what you experience while viewing the art created by John Wright.  

What happens next?

John and Christian, an artist and a scientist, have discovered a shared fascination in both Art Photography and Socio-behavioural Science and Analysis. They fully intend to continue exploring the blurred lines between science and art. Following the end of COVID restrictions, they plan to launch a physical gallery exhibition to compare the answers given in this project to those provided in a real world environment. 

Please know that by participating anonymously in this project, your answers will help provide valuable information regarding the relationship between experiencing art and our well being. If you don’t want to donate your data for this project, please don’t participate. As the data is anonymous, we are not able to delete data sets at a later time point upon your request. Moreover, please know that the project has been pre-registered at the Open Science Framework, where data from this project will be uploaded after the arts project has been finished (for reasons of scientific transparency).

This project is approved by the ethics committee at Ulm University in Ulm/Germany (number 491/20).