Technology visualising art's impact on brainwaves will tour the UK

A woman wearing an EEG headset looks at a painted self-portrait by Van Gogh.
Headset wearer looking at Van Gogh

Experience the impact that art has on your brain in real time as Art Fund tours brainwave-reading technology to museums across the UK.

For the first time ever, audiences across the UK will have the opportunity to see the impact of art on their brainwaves, as we'll be touring technology that visualises this in real time and in 3D to a number of museums this spring and summer.

Following a highly successful trial of the brainwaves experience in November last year, we'll be bringing the technology to museums and galleries in England, Scotland and Wales between April and July.   

The project highlights how people’s brains are stimulated when they experience art in museums and galleries, and aims to help answer the question of the fundamental value of art and the impact it has on us. Visitors of all ages are invited to take part by viewing art or artefacts while wearing a headset that is connected to an electroencephalogram (EEG) monitor. The outputs of their brainwaves as they react to the art are then visualised on-screen in 3D and real-time. 

Keen to try the headset yourself? The brainwaves experience will tour to: 

Research commissioned to accompany the project found that while 95% of UK adults agree that visiting museums and galleries is beneficial, four in 10 (40%) visit less than once a year and around one in six Brits (16%) believe that art has no impact on them. However, the technology allows users to see the clear and immediate effect art can have on the human brain. 

By illustrating the impact of art on our brains and emotions, we hope to encourage visiting museum and galleries with a National Art Pass, which allows members of the public to enjoy free entry to hundreds of museums, galleries and historic houses across the UK as well as 50% off major exhibitions and discounts in museum shops and cafés.

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