Who paints better abstract art, professional artists or children?

| March 16, 2011 | 3 Replies

Several years ago, I admitted my lack of appreciation regarding most abstract art. That voice in my head often says, “a child could have done that.”

Image by Serenethos of Dreamstime (with permission)

And now this proposition has been tested. The result: People usually, but not overwhelmingly prefer the abstract art of professional artists to that done by children (and art done by animals). The results were reported by Discover Magazine.

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Category: Art, Psychology Cognition

About the Author ()

Erich Vieth is an attorney focusing on consumer law litigation and appellate practice. He is also a working musician and a writer, having founded Dangerous Intersection in 2006. Erich and his wife, Anne Jay, live in the Shaw Neighborhood of St. Louis, Missouri, where they are raising their two extraordinary daughters.

Comments (3)

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  1. Jim Razinha says:

    When I forget myself and utter the phrase "That's not art", I am usually told to leave the room.

    The art education I've received in the last year as my wife has gone "pro" helps me see some things a bit differently. But not everything.

  2. Thanks for using my abstract painting above, Blue Space Water Abstract, as a reference for your article. Upon reading further it is good to know that about 2/3 of people like the abstract art painted by professional artists.

    It may be that animals prefer paintings made by animals and humans prefer paintings made by humans even if they are similar. Maybe it has to do with the intuitive style.

    It would be interesting to find out from animals trained in speech and language what they think when comparing two similar paintings; one made by an ape and one by a human.

    Thanks for the insight.

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