Computational Intelligence Approaches to Computational Aesthetics

Computational Intelligence Approaches to Computational Aesthetics

Erandi Lakshika (University of New South Wales, Australia) and Michael Barlow (University of New South Wales, Australia)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-7368-5.ch007

Abstract

Computational aesthetics is an area of research that attempts to develop computational methods that can perform human-like aesthetic judgements. Aesthetic judgements are often subjective, and as such, the development of computational models of aesthetics is highly challenging. This chapter summarizes the advancements in the area of computational aesthetics and how computational intelligence techniques are applied in art and aesthetics ranging from simple classification problems to more advanced problems such as automatic generation of art artefacts, stories, and simulations. The chapter concludes by summarizing major challenges that need to be addressed, and future directions that need to be undertaken in order to make significant advancements in the area of computational aesthetics and its applications.
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Background

Aesthetics

The study of aesthetics is chiefly a branch of philosophy with links to other disciplines such as psychology. The term aesthetics was derived from the Greek word aisthanesthai (to perceive (by the senses or by the mind)) and introduced into the philosophical terminology in the eighteenth century (Saw & Osborne, 1960). The definition of aesthetics is a long standing debate. Early definitions of aesthetics are related to art or beauty (Santayana, 1904). Later attempts to define aesthetics discuss that aesthetics mean more than just art and natural beauty (Walton, 2007), (Palmer, Schloss, & Sammartino, 2013). Therefore more contemporary definitions are woven around human mental processes involved in making aesthetic judgements; for example:

  • The study of human minds and emotions in relation to the sense of beauty (Palmer et al., 2013).

  • Psychological mechanisms that allow humans to experience and appreciate a broad variety of objects and phenomena, including utensils, commodities, designs, other people, or nature, in aesthetic terms (beautiful, attractive, ugly, sublime, picturesque, and so on) (Leder & Nadal, 2014).

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