Brain and Art

Museums, concerts, dance performances and films attract billions of people worldwide. Indeed, visual art and music have been with us essentially from the beginning of our species. This must mean that Art (and hence, artists) succeed to tap into particular and powerful mechanisms in our brain. This artistic success also means that understanding the phenomenon of Art is a key challenge for modern brain research.

Could we understand, in biological terms, the unique and fantastic capabilities of the human brain to both create and enjoy art? In the past decade neuroscience has made a huge leap in developing experimental techniques as well as theoretical frameworks for studying emergent properties following the activity of large neuronal networks. These methods, including MEG, fMRI, sophisticated data analysis approaches and behavioral methods, are increasingly being used in many labs worldwide, with the goal to explore brain mechanisms corresponding to the artistic experience.

Authors: Idan Segev, Luis M. Martinez and Robert J. Zatorre,
Year of publication: 2014
Journal: Front. Hum. Neurosci.

Link to publication:


“Working memory”