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Imagination – either explicitly or implicitly – plays an important role in contemporary conceptions of creativity. In contrast, imagination has not been given the same weight in most mainstream modern models of aesthetic experience. I argue that imagination is an important component of aesthetic experience in at least two ways. First, imagination likely guides our search for meaning when interacting with artworks. It can do so by driving our search for the underlying concepts and causes that originated the artwork, as well as facilitating internally generated thoughts. Second, imagination can facilitate transitions from states of uncertainty to states of increased predictability in the course of interacting with artworks. As such, models of aesthetic experience would benefit by explicitly incorporating imagination into their frameworks.
Historically, the brain bases of creativity have been of great interest to scholars and the public alike. However, recent technological innovations in the neurosciences, coupled with theoretical and methodological advances in creativity assessment, have enabled humans to gain unprecedented insights into the contributions of the brain to creative thought. This unique volume brings together contributions by the very best scholars to offer a comprehensive overview of cutting edge research on this important and fascinating topic. The chapters discuss creativity's relationship with intelligence, motivation, psychopathology and pharmacology, as well as the contributions of general psychological processes to creativity, such as attention, memory, imagination, and language. This book also includes specific and novel approaches to understanding creativity involving musicians, polymaths, animal models, and psychedelic experiences. The chapters are meant to give the reader a solid grasp of the diversity of approaches currently at play in this active and rapidly growing field of inquiry.
Psychologists have historically been interested in architecture as an important domain within which to study creativity. Classic studies highlighted the role of personality variables, while at the same time downplaying the contributions of some cognitive abilities (e.g., intelligence) to individual differences in architectural creativity. Recently, research in this domain has been informed by novel findings from psychology, neuropsychology, and neuroscience. Specifically, architectural creativity has been linked to the flexible interplay between associative and inferential processes, the neural systems for which are dissociable in the brain. In addition, evidence suggests that high-level creativity in architecture could in part be driven by ordinary thought processes working on exceptionally rich content. In turn, neuroimaging studies have begun to also shed light on the neural bases of our aesthetic appreciation of various basic features of architectural design such as contour, ceiling height, and perceived enclosure. Together, these various strands of research are increasing our understanding of creativity and aesthetic appreciation in the domain of architecture.