Two studies explored the stability of art preference in patients with Alzheimer’s disease and age-matched control participants. Preferences for three different styles of paintings, displayed on art postcards, were examined over two sessions. Preference for specific paintings differed among individuals but AD and non-AD groups maintained about the same stability in terms of preference judgments across two weeks, even though the AD patients did not have explicit memory for the paintings. We conclude that aesthetic responses can be preserved in the face of cognitive decline. This should encourage caregivers and family to engage in arts appreciation activities with patients, and reinforces the validity of a preference response as a dependent measure in testing paradigms.
Brain and Cognition
Halpern, Andrea; Ly, J.; Elkin-Franklin, S.; and O'Connor, M.G.. "I know what I like: Stability of aesthetic preference in Alzheimer's disease." Brain and Cognition (2008) : 65-72.