Andy Warhol's Brillo Box
The fact that our brains may be predisposed one way or another toward certain qualities, such as proportion, symmetry, or scale invariance, does not help us better understand aesthetic experience as aesthetic and as experience. Common perceptual mechanisms are surely involved in looking at Andy Warhol’s 1964 sculpture Brillo Box in a gallery and at James Harvey’s original Brillo boxes in a supermarket.
Harvey’s representative complained about Warhol’s use of his client’s design, yet he despondently admitted, “What’s one man’s box, may be another man’s art” (Gaddy 2007). While neuroaesthetics does not aim to analyze such a situation, it should at least have the means of taking it into account.
There's a 2017 HBO documentary called "Brillo Box (3¢ Off)". It's about a yellow Brillo Box bought in 1969 by Lisanne Skyler's parents and sold 40 years later for more than $3 million. Watch the trailer below:
Artistic appreciation has been a matter of inquiry for aestheticians and philosophers for a long time, and Vidal and Ortega's work shows us that it continues to be so in the recent work of neuroaestheticians. In case the Brillo Box made you wonder about the limits of art, we suggest you delve into this question through the links below: