Dyslexia secret of Da Vinci and Picasso’s success

Sunday, November 14, 2010

LONDON - The secret of Leonardo da Vinci and Pablo Picasso’s success may have been their dyslexia, a learning difficulty. Researchers say that dyslexics have a better understanding of space.

The famous artists suffered from dyslexia, the inability to see words written properly, which is thought to affect as many as one in 12 children.

Scientists, however, believe that it may be the difference between drawing scribbles and producing works of art, according to the journal Learning and Individual Differences.

Researchers from Middlesex University in Britain think they have explained the reason behind some of the world’s most recognised artworks, such as the Mona Lisa, the Telegraph reports.

They tested the visuospatial ability, the ability to process 3D information, of 41 men and women. The ability is essential to artistic talent.

Half of the participants suffered from dyslexia, so had trouble spelling, reading and writing. The researchers found that the dyslexic men did better than the other men on many of the tests, including remembering and reproducing images.

They were also better at navigating through a 3D virtual town. The researchers suggested that dyslexics have a better understanding of space.

Nicola Brunswick, who led the research, said: “Many dyslexic people prefer to work out problems by thinking and doing rather than speaking. This could help dyslexic men develop the kind of skills they need to succeed in the artistic and creative worlds.”

Filed under: Science and Technology

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