Art Metaphors (05-03-22)

Crawford and Juricevic studied the use of metaphors in art. They share that they “analyze[d] the literal and metaphorical use of the pictorial device of exaggerated size in 59 well-known works of art sampled from across history. Exaggerated size was chosen for analysis because it is often used literally (e.g., to depict an actual giant) or metaphorically (e.g., to depict an existential concern). . . . when metaphoric and literal information conflicts [in art], viewers favor metaphoric interpretations. . . . These results also provide a guide for combining literal and metaphorical information, whether the goal is ease of communication or to intentionally challenge the viewer.”

Christopher Crawford and Igor Juricevic.  “Understanding Metaphor in Art:  Distinguishing Literal Giants from Metaphorical Challenges.”  Psychology of Aesthetics, Creativity, and the Arts, in press, https://doi.org/10.1037/aca0000477