chapter  15
16 Pages

Neuromuseology

ByJohn Onians

The effect of neuromuseology on the understanding of what goes on there in the context of the acquisition, display and viewing of objects is rather like turning on the lights in a museum. Among the many advantages that the perspective of neuromuseology offers is that it allows us to take a much broader view of the 'museum' phenomenon, that is, the whole history of human collecting and display. If this history of neuromuseology before neuroscience brings out something of the full range of interests and responses felt by collectors and viewers, the first uses of modern neuroscience reveal a restricted concentration. A neural approach to museology thus encourages us to look again at all aspects of the collecting and display of visually interesting objects, taking a broader view than is often associated with the discipline. As Falk and Frith argue, the sophisticated study of such engagement has the possibility of greatly enhancing the value and effectiveness of those activities.