Why are we attracted to beauty?

Valerius, a Roman emperor of the 4th century AD, issued the edict that bears his name and encouraged judges to condemn the ugliest in case of doubt.

The value of beauty lies not in the one who possesses it, but in the one who observes it. “Before the gaze, the landscape was only territory”, says Joan Nogué.

There are animals that are also sensitive to beauty, so there must be some evolutionary advantage in this, and this has to do with sexual selection. Through the exhibition of beauty we seek to attract attention, to arouse a fascination that conditions the search for a partner.

Humans have been able to shift from natural beauty to artistic beauty. Already the first lithic tools had an aesthetic background that accompanied the practice, an extra that generated admiration and offered sexual advantage.

There are canons of beauty with an important cultural component, even temporary, but there are others that are universal. We know that certain landscapes reflecting Pleistocene Africa (trees, animals, water, foliage) are admired by all known cultures.

Beauty moves. Embrace romanticism, without complexes.


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