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Sergei Shchebetenko1,2, Ekaterina Tutikova3
  • 1 National Research University Higher School of Economics, 20 Myasnitskaya Str., Moscow, 101000, Russian Federation
  • 2 Perm State University, 15 Bukireva street, Perm, 614990, Russia
  • 3 Perm State University, 15 Bukireva str., Perm, 614990, Russia

“The Picture is Good Because Openness to Experience is Good”: The Mediating Role of Attitudes toward Personality Traits in Individual Differences in Painting Preferences (in Russian)

2015. Vol. 12. No. 4. P. 122–141 [issue contents]

The mediating role of attitudes toward personality traits in the relationships between corresponding traits and painting preferences was studied. Attitudes toward traits represent bipolar (positive vs. negative)  evaluations of a given trait. In this study, the crucial emphasis was made on openness to experience which, as the extant literature reports, is a key predictor of artistic preferences and positive attitudes toward art in general. 110 participants aged 20-30 studied reproductions of 20 paintings related to five painting schools including hyperrealism, realism, impressionism, surrealism, and abstract art.. A principal component analysis revealed two latent variables of preferences for 14 out of 20 paintings such that the former component characterized conventionally traditional genres whereas the latter component characterized conventionally mental genres comprised of surrealism and abstract art.  The preference for traditional genres positively correlated with extraversion, agreeableness, and openness as well as with attitudes toward each of the five traits. On the contrary, the preference for mental genres correlated with openness and attitude toward openness only. The effect sizes provided evidence that attitudes toward traits may be more substantial predictors of painting preferences than the traits themselves. Moreover, in line with the hypothesis, positive attitude toward openness eliminated a direct effect of trait openness on the preferences of traditional genres fully and mental genres partially. Similar mediating effects were found a posteriori in the context of traditional genres for extraversion, agreeableness, and attitudes toward these traits. The authors presume openness to experience to be a unique personality predictor when paintings differ from routine visual perception are in the limelight such as mental genres mentioned above. The implications and limitations of the study are discussed.

Citation: Shchebetenko, S., & Tutikova, E. (2015). “The Picture is Good Because Openness to Experience is Good”: The Mediating Role of Attitudes toward Personality Traits in Individual Differences in Painting Preferences. Psychology. Journal of Higher School of Economics, 12(4), 122-141 (in Russian)
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