Does Curved Furniture Make You Feel Relaxed And Hopeful? You’re Not Alone

By Dave McGinn, Globe and Mail
November 7, 2013

Architects and interior designers have plenty of tools at their disposal. Oshin Vartanian, a neuroscientist at the University of Toronto, wants to add one more: a functional magnetic resonance imaging machine used to unlock the secrets of the human brain. In a study published earlier this year in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Vartanian and colleagues found that research subjects, both men and women, preferred curved spaces over rectilinear ones. Not only were people more likely to say curved spaces were beautiful, but viewing such spaces fired up activity in the anterior cingulate cortex, an area of the brain associated with aesthetic judgments. More …

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