Tuesday, 10 May 2016

Ewan Clayton: free visual memory test in June 2016


Come and take part in an exciting experiment happening all day June 1st in the Gallery to see how good your face recognition ability is and contribute to science.

Face blindness, super-recognition and the brain

We see and recognize faces everyday without even realizing it. However, what if the ability to recognize faces was taken from you and you couldn’t recognize your loved ones, your colleagues or famous people in the media? As a consequence of brain damage some individuals suffer from prosopagnosia, or face-blindness, as exemplified in ‘The Man Who Mistook His Wife For A Hat’. Face-blindness causes people to have extreme difficulty in recognizing familiar faces which can have negative consequences on everyday life, social confidence, etc. 

At the other end of the spectrum, super-recognizers are exceptionally good at recognizing faces. Super-recognizers can sometimes remember the face of someone they saw for a fleeting moment, many years earlier!

Understanding how faces are recognized generally can hopefully help neuroscientists develop rehabilitation techniques to improve face-recognition for those with face-blindness.

We are particularly interested in how individuals who pay particular attention to visual detail, such as artists, perform on our visual memory tests. We would be delighted if you were able to participate in this research.