The Necessity of Theoretical Foundations for Understanding and Designing for Empirical Aesthetic

Document Type : Original Article


1 Center of Product Design and Manufacturing (CPDM), Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Bangalore, India.

2 Center of Instrument Design and Development (IDDC), Indian Institute of Technology Delhi (IIT Delhi), New Delhi, India.


Aesthetic design serves a psychological necessity for us and plays a critical role in the design. The perception of beauty is most important because it leads to aesthetic experience (Hekkert & Leder, 2008; Hoyer & Stokburger-Sauer, 2012), which occurs in a safe environment (Leder et al., 2004) and helps us in making an aesthetic preference. The perception of a beautiful aspect of the beautiful object is known as artistic sensitivity. Aesthetic-sensitive consumers tend to have a richer set of experiences with a given stimulus than the ordinary consumer. It has been asked more often that “whether ordinary consumers are sensitive to aesthetics or not?”(Hoyer & Stokburger-Sauer, 2012) because it is a crucial aspect of human beings, essential to artists, designers, and positively correlated with creativity.
Due to the lack of theoretical, methodological, systematic, and scientific studies in empirical aesthetics; the psychology of aesthetics is in its early stages of development (Bamossy et al., 1985). Furthermore, very few investigations happened (Veryzer, 1993) that landed us with few measuring instruments such as the Test of Esthetic Appreciation (Thorndike, 1916), The Meier art test. I. Art Judgment (N. C. Meier, 1940), Design Judgment Test (Graves, 1948), A Figure Preference Test (Barron & Welsh, 1952), Child’s experiment (Child, 1962), Visual Aesthetic Sensitivity Test (Götz et al., 1979), The Assessment of Aesthetic Judgment Ability (Bamossy et al., 1985) and for neuro-aesthetics (Jacobsen, 2010). The present review paper describes the need for scientific investigation i.e., theoretical foundation and challenges in instrument design for aesthetic sensitivity measurement.


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