Spatial-attention and emotional evocation: Line bisection performance and visual art emotional evocation

Academic Article


  • Lesion studies demonstrate that the right temporal-parietal region (RTP) is important for mediating spatial attention. The RTP is also involved in emotional experiences that can be evoked by art. Normal people vary in their ability to allocate spatial attention, thus, people who can better allocate attention might also be more influenced by the emotional messages of the paintings (evocative impact). Seventeen healthy participants bisected an unlabeled 100 mm line and their performance on this task was used to create two groups, individuals who were more (mALB) and less accurate (lALB). These participants also judged 10 paintings on five qualities, Evocative Impact, Aesthetics, Novelty, Technique, and Closure by marking a 100 mm line from 1 (low degree) to 10 (high degree). An ANOVA indicated differences in accuracy on the line bisection (LB) between the two groups. Additional ANOVAs, using the quality ratings as the dependent measure, revealed that the mALB group scored the Evocative Impact greater than the lALB group. These results suggest that the differences in attentional bias between the two groups, as indicated by their LB performance, might influence their evocative impact or reactions and also be a 'barometer' of other RTP functions, including emotional processing.
  • Authors

    Published In

    Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Drago V; Finney GR; Foster PS; Amengual A; Jeong Y; Mizuno T; Crucian GP; Heilman KM
  • Start Page

  • 140
  • End Page

  • 144
  • Volume

  • 66
  • Issue

  • 2