Individual differences in conflicting stimulus evaluations: Openness/Intellect predicts mixed-valenced appraisals of visual art

Openness/Intellect, a trait domain reflecting a tendency towards cognitive exploration, is positively associated with the tendency to experience mixed emotions (i.e., simultaneous positive and negative feelings). This study examined whether this trait is also positively associated with mixed appraisals (i.e., concurrent positive and negative stimulus evaluations). Participants (N = 225) appraised 18 visual artworks. Higher Openness/Intellect predicted stronger mixed appraisals, particularly of the artworks rated as more mixed on average. Openness/Intellect also predicted stronger within-person positive relations between artwork viewing time and mixed appraisals, though this finding was less consistent across measures. It also appeared that Neuroticism might predict a lesser tendency to make mixed appraisals. This study provides a foundation for future research examining individual differences in mixed appraisals.

 

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