Between eccentricity and madness
The eccentric Vincent Van Gogh
A study has confirmed this
Eccentricity effect
Sunflowers by Van Gogh
An unexpected result
The bizarre overcomes the ordinary
The Lady Gaga Effect
A different experiment
Attracted by oddities
Are we really attracted to eccentricity?
Beyond the experiment
The great result
Other Eccentric Contemporary Artists
Why are we drawn to the bizarre?
A part of us
Only in the art world
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Why are artists like Van Gogh or Lady Gaga so fascinating? Science has the answer
(1/17)
Between eccentricity and madness

Van Gogh, Salvador Dali and Picasso are among many international artists who have become famous for both their eccentricities and their undoubted talent. According to recent studies, people seem to be more attracted to artists who are out of the ordinary than those who are more "normal." Are you fascinated by eccentric artists? Check out this gallery for more information.

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Why are artists like Van Gogh or Lady Gaga so fascinating? Science has the answer
(2/17)
The eccentric Vincent Van Gogh

The art world is full of artists of all kinds, but many of them have left indelible marks that have made them truly immortal stars, such as Vincent Van Gogh.

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Why are artists like Van Gogh or Lady Gaga so fascinating? Science has the answer
(3/17)
A study has confirmed this

A British study published in the European Journal of Social Psychology looked at the famous painter Van Gogh. According to this experiment, people seem to be much more attracted to eccentric artists than to "normal" people.

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Why are artists like Van Gogh or Lady Gaga so fascinating? Science has the answer
(4/17)
Eccentricity effect

This is what is known as the "eccentricity effect", which is due to the fact that our perception of the author's work is strongly influenced by the prejudices we have about the artist in question.

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Why are artists like Van Gogh or Lady Gaga so fascinating? Science has the answer
(5/17)
Sunflowers by Van Gogh

The experiment in this study consisted of presenting Vincent Van Gogh's famous Sunflowers to two groups of participants. The first group also learned about the episode of the artist's self-mutilation on his ear, while the second group wasn't given this information.

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Why are artists like Van Gogh or Lady Gaga so fascinating? Science has the answer
(6/17)
An unexpected result

The result was overwhelming, as the first group gave much more positive feedback on the work, with comments and opinions being more enthusiastic than those of the second group.

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Why are artists like Van Gogh or Lady Gaga so fascinating? Science has the answer
(7/17)
The bizarre overcomes the ordinary

So this result was clear evidence of the well-known "eccentricity effect": people are much more attracted to bizarre and unusual stories.

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Why are artists like Van Gogh or Lady Gaga so fascinating? Science has the answer
(8/17)
The Lady Gaga Effect

However this does not apply only to artists from the past, but also with modern figures such as the eclectic Lady Gaga, the queen of eccentricity. A similar experiment was conducted with the international singer.

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Why are artists like Van Gogh or Lady Gaga so fascinating? Science has the answer
(9/17)
A different experiment

Here, too, two groups of participants were brought together. The first group was shown a picture of the singer in an elegant black dress, while the second group was shown a picture of Lady Gaga in a suit, also in black but with a conspicuous mask over her face.

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Why are artists like Van Gogh or Lady Gaga so fascinating? Science has the answer
(10/17)
Attracted by oddities

The second group seems to have enjoyed the music of the famous international singer much more than the first, confirming the experiment previously carried out with Vincent Van Gogh.

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Why are artists like Van Gogh or Lady Gaga so fascinating? Science has the answer
(11/17)
Are we really attracted to eccentricity?

In the Lady Gaga experiment, researchers wanted to go further to see how attracted we are to an artist's eccentricity.

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Why are artists like Van Gogh or Lady Gaga so fascinating? Science has the answer
(12/17)
Beyond the experiment

Participants were told that the singer's quirks and eccentricities were created by marketers and that her fame rests on a fictional character.

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Why are artists like Van Gogh or Lady Gaga so fascinating? Science has the answer
(13/17)
The great result

After hearing this, the participants expressed great disappointment and the previously expressed appreciation dropped significantly. This shows that the eccentric, even if it attracts us unconsciously, has to be authentic and not artificial.

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Why are artists like Van Gogh or Lady Gaga so fascinating? Science has the answer
(14/17)
Other Eccentric Contemporary Artists

Today there are many artists who base their success on their particular individuality, like Tim Burton's films or the performances of Elton John or Michael Jackson.

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Why are artists like Van Gogh or Lady Gaga so fascinating? Science has the answer
(15/17)
Why are we drawn to the bizarre?

So the eccentricity effect is definitely there. But one of the questions that arises is: Why are we more attracted to the bizarre?

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Why are artists like Van Gogh or Lady Gaga so fascinating? Science has the answer
(16/17)
A part of us

According to modern psychology, we may be attracted to everything we are not or cannot be, and therefore see in these somewhat "alien" characters a part of ourselves that we would like to express in the same way, but which we are denied due to social conventions.

Photo: Unsplush, di Eye for Ebony

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Why are artists like Van Gogh or Lady Gaga so fascinating? Science has the answer
(17/17)
Only in the art world

However, a central problem emerges from the results of the conducted studies: everything bizarre and eccentric is only accepted in art, but not in science, where more conventional people are preferred.

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