The Brain

Art & Cognitive Development

Art's positive effects on the brain


When students practice specific art forms, it strengthens the attention network of the brain (Hardiman, Magsamen, McKhann, & Eilber, 2009).   Not only do these tasks help to improve attention, but “the generalized parts of intelligence related to fluid intelligence increased as well” (Park et al, 2015).  Arts education also has shown to have a positive effect on cortical thickness, which has a beneficial effect on executive functions (2015).  These results not only improve performance in art, but improve performance in other subject areas and behavior.  Arts Education, therefore, is essential in building problem solving and critical thinking abilities across all platforms, and is important for the cognitive growth in our students.

Jonathan Fineburg on how Modern Art can help you become more creative:


Works of modern art discussed during this segment:

Jean Dubuffet- Fluence

Robert Motherwell- At Five in the Afternoon

Christo and Jeanne-Claude- Surrounded Islands

Alexander Calder- Dog

Jean Miró- Spanish Dancer