Symbolization and plastic representation of emotions  

Kovańćev A. N.
University of Ljubljana, Health Faculty, Ljubljana, Slovenia

The aim of the present study was to ascertain the main characteristics of the plastic representation of emotions. Subjects had to experience four primary emotions (joy, sorrow, anger, and fear) with the help of autosuggestion. Then they had to draw them with fibre pen. Their drawings had to be abstract. The only available means of self-expression were: colours, lines, and dots. Drawings were analysed with the help of a list of plastic elements and the main characteristics of the whole. The list was prepared in advance. The analysis showed that the symbolization of emotions was strongly determined by their conceptualization and that their experiencing was not crucial. In spite of the successive drawing of four emotions there were no interferences among them. The hypothesis of the independence of the use of plastic elements of emotions was tested with the chi2-test. It was found out, that colours differentiated between emotions more significantly than lines. The basic characteristics of the symbolization of each primary emotion were identified. There were a lot of similarities between the plastic representations of the same emotion drawn by different subjects. These were clearly seen from the use of plastic elements, structural characteristics of the completed representations and the added schemes.