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  • Writer's pictureDavid Hodgson

How Art Works: A Psychological Exploration by Ellen Winner

Art is a human experience and like all experiences it is processed by the mind. Art is therefore a phenomenon ripe for examination by psychologists. Understanding exactly how the mind digests art is Winner’s life’s work. The breadth of this book is impressive, from the question of “What is art?” to the value of arts-based education. Throughout Winner offers fascinating insights, yet reading her book felt like a bit of a chore. At several points I wondered if How Art Works could have been presented more artfully, perhaps as a collection of linked essays instead of a single text-book-like whole. 3.5/5


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