Are you a fan of art? Do you enjoy going to museums or appreciate the wonder of a sunset? Do you knit, sing, doodle, hum, dance, paint, sculpt, or make art in some way? Do you believe that is art is just for people who are good at it? What if you knew that participating in some form of art once a month or more could extend your life by a decade? It turns out it can! There is a field called Neuroaesthetics which is the study of how the arts and aesthetic experiences, in all forms, measurably change the body, brain, and behavior improve well-being. “The arts are a superpower with the ability to address physical and mental health issues, learning, flourishing and community building.” As you’ll hear in this interview we are hardwired for art as our birthright. This is a fascinating conversation with two female leaders, Susan Magsamen and Ivy Ross, who wrote Your Brain on Art to educate people about the transformative power of the arts. This is an invitation to incorporate art to live healthier and happier lives based on the science-backed research showing the many benefits to you, your community, and the planet. You are going to love this conversation!


1️⃣ What is neuroaesthetics.

2️⃣ The transformative power of art and their mission with the book.

3️⃣ How profound art is to our well-being. We can extend our life by participating in one art experience or more per month.

4️⃣ How art rewires the brain and how the senses are involved.

5️⃣ How the arts are being used to address health disorders, illnesses and mental health. They share stories relating to Parkinson’s Disease and Alzheimer’s.

6️⃣ The kinds of activities people can explore who don’t see themselves as artists. (Hint – all of them).

7️⃣ How the arts can help with mental health and much more.



Ivy Ross is the Vice President of Design for Hardware Products at Google, where she leads a team that has created over fifty products, winning over 225 design awards. An artist with work in over ten international museums, Ivy is also a National Endowment for Arts grant recipient, and was ninth on Fast Company’s list of the 100 most creative people in business in 2019.

Susan Magsamen is the Founder and Director of the International Arts + Mind Lab Center for Applied Neuroaesthetics at the Pedersen Brain Science Institute of the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, where she is a faculty member in the department of neurology. She is also the Co-Director of the NeuroArts Blueprint with Aspen Institute.

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