Touching Art (07-08-20)

Szubielska and Niestorowicz evaluated how responses to tactile art, art developed for people who are visually impaired, are influenced by being able to see that art.  They report that “By providing the context of a contemporary art exhibition designed to be touched, we studied haptic pleasure towards artworks. In line with our hypothesis, seeing affected the evaluation of haptic pleasure which was higher in the blindfolded-tactile than visuo-tactile condition. Thus, seeing seems to impede the tactile processing of artworks. . . . it seems that sight may suppress the haptic pleasure coming from touching art. . . . Hence, exposing artworks illuminated with muffled light or unlighted may increase the likelihood of experiencing haptic aesthetic pleasure when touching art.”

Magdalena Szubielska and Ewa Niestorowicz.  2020. “Seeing Suppresses Haptic Please While Perceiving Contemporary Art.”  i-Perception, vol. 11, no. 3,