Annals of Indian Academy of Neurology
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Year : 2012  |  Volume : 15  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 71-75

The neural circuitry of visual artistic production and appreciation: A proposition


Department of Neurology, Vivekananda Institute of Medical Science, Calcutta, India

Correspondence Address:
Ambar Chakravarty
1E 1202, Avishikta II Calcutta 700 078
India
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DOI: 10.4103/0972-2327.94986

PMID: 22566716

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The nondominant inferior parietal lobule is probably a major "store house" of artistic creativity. The ventromedial prefrontal lobe (VMPFL) is supposed to be involved in creative cognition and the dorsolateral prefrontal lobe (DLPFL) in creative output. The conceptual ventral and dorsal visual system pathways likely represent the inferior and superior longitudinal fasciculi. During artistic production, conceptualization is conceived in the VMPFL and the executive part is operated through the DLFPL. The latter transfers the concept to the visual brain through the superior longitudinal fasciculus (SLF), relaying on its path to the parietal cortex. The conceptualization at VMPFL is influenced by activity from the anterior temporal lobe through the uncinate fasciculus and limbic system pathways. The final visual image formed in the visual brain is subsequently transferred back to the DLPFL through the SLF and then handed over to the motor cortex for execution. During art appreciation, the image at the visual brain is transferred to the frontal lobe through the SLF and there it is matched with emotional and memory inputs from the anterior temporal lobe transmitted through the uncinate fasiculus. Beauty is perceived at the VMPFL and transferred through the uncinate fasciculus to the hippocampo-amygdaloid complex in the anterior temporal lobe. The limbic system (Papez circuit) is activated and emotion of appreciation is evoked. It is postulated that in practice the entire circuitry is activated simultaneously.


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