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Volume 12 Issue 1

Preferences for profile orientation in portraits.

John P. McLaughlin & Kimberly E. Murphy, 1994, 12:1, 1-7.
Abstract: Artists who have painted portraits overwhelmingly represented the sitter in some degree of profile, emphasizing one cheek. When the sitter was female, the left cheek was shown with much greater frequency than the right. However, in forced-choice judgments between original and mirror-reversed portraits, versions emphasizing the right cheek were preferred by male and female, dextral and sinistral subjects, irrespective of the sitter's sex. This may result from a left visual-field perceptual bias attributable to hemispheric specialization or from changing cultural biases.
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Sex of the face in Western art: Left and right in portraits.

Dahlia W. Zaidel & Peter Fitzgerald, 1994, 12:1, 9-18.
Abstract: The relationship between observers' taste and the sitter's face orientation as function of sitter sex in painted portraits was investigated. The historical tendency in portraiture is that the sitter's left side of the face is more likely than the right to be turned towards the viewer and this side bias is stronger with women than with men. Correctly oriented and reversed museum portraits were viewed by subjects who gave ratings of "liking" the portrait as a whole (Experiment 1) and for "attractiveness" of the sitter (Experiment 2). Only portraits of women showed a left-right difference with right favored significantly over left, irrespective of orientation or type of rating. These findings go against the historical pattern of the sex-related bias in portraiture. They suggest that most women are painted in an orientation which is less favorable to them.
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Differences in visual preferences and cognitive aptitudes of professional artists and nonartists.

Nikolaus Bezrucko & David H. Schroeder, 1994, 12:1, 19-39.
Abstract: In one study, four tests of artistic judgment and a battery of cognitive ability tests were administered to examinee artists and nonartists. In another study, the artistic judgment tests were administered to professional artists and nonartists. The results showed professional artists and nonartists to differ significantly on all dimensions of visual preference and examinee artists to score significantly higher on several tests of cognitive ability. The results suggest fundamental differences between the visual preferences of artists and nonartists with interesting implications concerning the influence of art background on cognitive development.
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On detecting the differences in jazz: A reassessment of comparative methods of measuring perceptual veridicality.

Geoffrey H. Blowers & John Bacon-Shone, 1994, 12:1, 41-58.
Abstract: This article reports an extension of the jazz studies of Holbrook and Huber, which compared individuals perceptions of music with its objective characteristics. One of their major findings was that a compositional approach to the data, i.e., one that used multiple discriminant or factor analysis provided a better statistical fit to objective features such as style, and key, than did a decompositional method which used a map derived by multidimensional scaling. They concluded that the compositional approach enables a more accurate assessment of perceptual veridicality. However, there is a confounding in their studies of the type of statistical analysis employed with the response mode allowed the subjects, which draws into question the validity of their conclusions. The study reported here assesses the relative merits of the type of statistic and mode of response separately. Its findings support the use of repertory grid as a viable tool in musical perception studies in which under appropriate conditions multiple discriminant analysis and multidimensional scaling are equally viable statistical procedures.
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Detecting the differences, indeed.

Morris B. Holbrook & Joel Huber, 1994, 12:1, 59-61.
Abstract: In sum, we value the contribution to the literature by Blowers and Bacon-Shone because it supports what we already believed on the basis of our earlier research. This support comes in the context of somewhat different artists (e.g., Ornette Coleman) playing an expanded repertoire (i.e., 32-bar songs as well as 12-bar blues) as judged by a new sample of respondents (i.e., Chinese students) in tests conducted across a broad range of procedures (e.g., both with and without ideal points). However, their study strikes us as more of a replication and extension than a reassessment of the previous work. In this, contrary to what the authors may have intended, it provides some encouraging reassurance on the validity of our original argument.
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Experimentally elicited judgments of color harmony.

Aviva Rapoport, 1994, 12:1, 63-83.
Abstract: Eight variants of each of four different geometrical forms were constructed by varying the proportions of six different colors. All possible pairs of the resulting colored pictures were presented to subjects who were asked to determine which of the two pictures is more harmonious, and by how much one picture is more harmonious than the other. Scaling of both individual and group data shows that subjects can produce consistent judgments of harmony which are measurable by a ratio scale. Two models of color harmony based on the work of Munsell and Itten yield similar predictions of color proportions, which are not supported by the data. The failure of the models is attributed in part to their disregard of color composition.
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Disjunctive ambiguity as a determinant of the aesthetic attractivity of visual patterns.

Frans Boselie & Annalisa CesÓro, 1994, 12:1, 85-94.
Abstract: An experiment is reported showing that, of two drawings both of which are readily interpreted as two objects in one or two frontal planes, the one that is disjunctive ambiguous is less preferred aesthetically than a corresponding unambiguous one.
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The taxonomy of visual aesthetic preferences: An empirical study.

H. J. Eysenck & G. W. Hawker, 1994, 12:1, 95-101.
Abstract: Earlier work has suggested the existence of two major dimensions of aesthetic preference judgments: 1) A general factor of "good taste," and 2) a bipolar factor based on a preference for simplicity as opposed to complexity. Two tests measuring these two factors were administered to an artistic and a control group, and a zero correlation was predicted for both. In addition the effects of artistic training were studied for the artistic group. Finally, ratings for aesthetic sensitivity and executive skill for members of the artistic group were correlated with the two tests. The tests, as predicted, were not correlated. Artistic training had a small but significant effect. The tests were not correlated with the ratings of aesthetic sensitivity and executive ability in drawing skill.
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