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*(A)rt and (R)esearch on (T)ransformations of (I)ndividuals and (S)ocieties

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October 27, 2022

Can art that evokes awe make children behave more prosocially towards others?

Awe is a mystical emotion that people often feel in response to impactful works of art. An interesting and well-documented evolutionary function of awe is that it fosters social bonding and elicits strong feelings of interconnectedness when people experience it. Across two studies, a team of researchers from the University of Amsterdam and University of California Berkeley, led by Eftychia Stamkou, set out to examine the social effects of awe in children, by investigating how this emotion influenced their behavior towards refugees. Findings showed that children who experienced awe when exposed to art were more likely to engage in voluntary behavior that benefited refugees, as compared to children who were led to experience other emotions. In other words, art that induced awe sparked prosociality in children.
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September 25, 2022

ARTIS Research Presentations at VSAC 2022

ARTIS members participated as symposium moderators and presenters at the Visual Science of Art Conference (Amsterdam), which took place online from the 24st until the 27st of August 2022.
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written by Katrin Heimann

In early summer 2021, Katrin Heimann was invited by Studio Olafur Eliasson to collaborate with the museum team at Fondation Beyeler in conducting a series of in-depth, micro-phenomenological interviews with a group of specially invited visitors to “Life.”

Life, 2021, Fondation Beyeler, Photo: Mark Niedermann

A site-specific artwork by artist Olafur Eliasson, Life was installed in 2021 at Fondation Beyeler, near Basel, Switzerland. To create the artwork, Eliasson removed the facade that separated the building from the surrounding garden, extended the existing pond into the galleries, and invited visitors to meander through the exhibition along a wooden walkway at any hour of the day or night. Eliasson is interested in the experiences that arise when artworks and people meet up at particular sites and at particular times. What he exhibits, he believes, is only part of an artwork; the other part emerges through the experiences of the thinking-feeling-moving visitors.
In early summer 2021, Katrin Heimann was invited by Studio Olafur Eliasson to collaborate with the museum team at Fondation Beyeler in conducting a series of in-depth, micro-phenomenological interviews with a group of specially invited visitors to Life. On the webpage https://experiencing-life.net you are invited to listen to some of the experiences shared by the participants! Let us know whether you like it or not? 

Life, 2021, Fondation Beyeler, Photo: Mark Niedermann
Life, 2021, Fondation Beyeler, Photo: Mark Niedermann
Life, 2021, Fondation Beyeler, Photo: Mark Niedermann

More information on the exhibition can be found here.

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