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An investigation of the impact of encounters with artistic imagination on well-being.

Totterdell, Peter and Poerio, Giulia L (2021) 'An investigation of the impact of encounters with artistic imagination on well-being.' Emotion, 21 (6). pp. 1340-1355. ISSN 1528-3542

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Abstract

Evidence about the impact of art on well-being is confined to studies of participatory arts and receptive arts that involve attending cultural events. This investigation examined the impact of art on well-being by framing people's engagement with art as encounters with artistic imagination. These encounters include traditional forms of cultural activity, such as a gallery or theater visit, but also encompass everyday activities, such as watching a screen drama or reading fiction. Three studies examined how such encounters affect emotional well-being, life satisfaction, meaning in life, and mental well-being. A survey study (<i>N</i> = 544) found that participants on average spent over 4 hr engaged with art the previous day. This study and an experience-sampling study (<i>N</i> = 50), in which participants completed a questionnaire via their smartphones twice daily for 10 days (854 responses), revealed that individuals' variety of encounters with art and accompanying elevating emotional experiences were associated with well-being. Live arts engagement was positively associated with all aspects of well-being, and visual and literary arts with greater meaning in life, whereas screen arts, audio arts, and sports spectating (for comparison) were not positively associated. A third study using (live) arts attendance and well-being data (<i>n</i> = 27,918) from 2 waves (3-year interval) of a large longitudinal panel survey showed that frequency of attendance predicted subsequent well-being, whereas arts participation did not. Overall, the evidence indicates that encounters with artistic imagination contribute to people's well-being, with effects varying according to the art form and the type of well-being assessed. (PsycInfo Database Record (c) 2020 APA, all rights reserved).

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: art, culture, imagination, well-being, meaning
Divisions: Faculty of Science and Health
Faculty of Science and Health > Psychology, Department of
SWORD Depositor: Elements
Depositing User: Elements
Date Deposited: 14 Jul 2021 15:29
Last Modified: 11 Feb 2022 15:00
URI: http://repository.essex.ac.uk/id/eprint/29834

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