The experience of visual art for people living with mild-to-moderate vision loss

Meredith J. Cheng, Emilie M.F. Rohan, Bhim B. Rai, Faran Sabeti, Ted Maddess, Jo Lane

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

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Background: Visual art can enhance wellbeing and quality-of-life; however, the experience of visual art for people with mild-to-moderate vision loss has not been examined. Methods: Eight participants (6 females, 2 males; Mean age = 81 years, SD = 7.9, range 70–91 years; 4 with mild vision loss and 4 with moderate vision loss based on binocular visual acuity) completed a mixed-methods study comprising: a semi-structured interview on visual art experience; an eye examination; and questionnaires about visual functioning and quality-of-life. Results: Various themes were identified: visual perception of art (e.g. altered colours, visual distortions, etc.), viewing conditions, elements of art, personal preference, deriving meaning, appreciation of art, impact of impaired visual perception, and social aspects of art. Conclusions: The overall experience of art is influenced by how an individual sees, perceives, and makes meaning from art. Even mild vision loss can impair this experience and impact emotional and social wellbeing.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-20
Number of pages20
JournalArts and Health
Publication statusPublished - 2023


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