Serendip is an independent site partnering with faculty at multiple colleges and universities around the world. Happy exploring!

Reply to comment

Anna Dela Cruz's picture

Intro and Inquiries

Hello my name is Anna Dela Cruz, but please call me DC. I am a junior biology major with an insatiable fascination with art and fashion. Just recently, I serendipitiously encountered an emerging field in science that aims to understand beauty from a biological standpoint-- bioaesthetics. Finally, a subject that combines both of my loves! The field of aesthetics is more closely associated with philosophy than with biology. Descartes believed beauty lies in symmetry. But what drove him to such conclusion? So question 1: What is the physiological basis for determining if something we see is beautiful? 

To me, art is very much driven by emotion--to harness that intense feeling and pictorially, and consciously recreate it, even using symbols/objects to represent intangible subjects. Which leads me to question 2: What allows the human brain to form associations between emotion and objects to therefore utilize such objects to represent the emotion? 

Of all the artistic movements, Surrealism is what intrigues me the most. It was a very multifaceted movement driven by intense emotions such as paranoia as well as dreams. So question 3: What are the biological mechanisms that allow humans to dream? Do dreams mean anything? Are there universal symbols in our dreams or are the symbols in our dreams purely personal and it is solely up to the individual to infer the meaning behind them? 


The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly.
To prevent automated spam submissions leave this field empty.
1 + 1 =
Solve this simple math problem and enter the result. E.g. for 1+3, enter 4.