The Head and the Heart

Is art a matter of the head or the heart for you?

Everyone views art differently. Some are more easily moved by it, and some are impacted differently. While art causes us to feel strong emotions, it also invites us to ponder. Either way, it’s a deeply personal experience.

When you look at art, do you find yourself trying to interpret it — ruminating over the culture of origin, artist’s intention, and the historical events surrounding the art piece?

Or do you experience a rush of emotion, roused by the brush strokes, colours, shapes, perhaps leading you into deeper introspection?

 We invite you to consider the following pieces:


1. Twilight in The River (Francesca Gnagnarella)

 What emotions do you feel when you gaze at the colours in Gnagnarella’s work? Is it melancholia? Peace? Turmoil? Or are you more invested in interpreting the gold streaks, mulling over what they might represent?


2. A Bagno Maria (Claire Denarié-Soffietti)

What impression does this painting leave on you? Are you more enraptured by the feelings evoked by the myriad of hues and shapes, or more intrigued by Denarié-Soffietti’s source of inspiration and creative process?

3. Sea Clouds (Loredana De Sole)

De Sole’s photograph features mountains bathed in a wispy layer of clouds. What feelings do the colours stir within you? What thoughts run through your head as you gaze at this portrayal of nature? 

Being emotionally moved by art isn’t a sign of weakness. Rather, it affirms the affective nature of art in our lives. But if you find it difficult to be moved by art, don’t worry. You’re not alone, and it’s more common than you think.


There’s no right or wrong way to approach art. Whether we take more intellectual pleasure from it, use it as a means of emotional catharsis, or experience a mix of both, art helps us to venture into the deeper recesses of our being. It helps us discover more about ourselves.

At the end of the day, there will always be art that speaks to us, something that resonates deep within our souls. Learning about our unique ways of perceiving art could help us to become more aware of our individual preferences, and the types of qualities we prefer in an artwork.