Personal determinants of preference for different architectural styles

Ryzhov, Boris Nikolayevich
D.Sc. in Psychological, Professor of the Department of General and Practical Psychology at the Institute of Special Education and Psychology of the Moscow City University, Moscow, Russia.

Kotova, Olga Viktorovna
Expert in the Laboratory of Social-and-Psychological Researches in Education at the Institute of Special Education and Psychology of the Moscow City University, Moscow, Russia

As an art form, architecture is inextricably linked with the sphere of spiritual culture. Aesthetic ideals and ideological attitudes, embodied in various architectural styles, reflect the value orientations of society, advising the spirit of the era and time. The style of architecture is a kind of moral creed of society. To date, there is a fairly wide range of works in the field of aesthetics of architecture in the literature, but the question of individual and personal characteristics of the assessment of various architectural styles remains open. In this regard, the problem of the attitude of modern Russian society to various architectural styles and the value systems on which they are based becomes relevant.
Raising the question of the development of architecture in recent decades, it should be noted that two major directions stand out in it, the fundamental distinguishing feature of which is in relation to the aesthetics of the traditional (classical) architectural form. If the first direction is characterized by an appeal to various historical styles, then the second is actually “modern architecture”, the adherents of which declare a rejection of the aesthetics of traditional forms and styles.
The report will present the results of a study of the emotional perception of architectural objects belonging to different styles, as well as the individual and personal characteristics of the respondents. The study was conducted in 2022 and covered a wide audience of 850 people aged 12 to 70 years. Respondents were presented photographic images of architectural objects of Moscow, made in six architectural styles in the period of the 19th - early 21st centuries, on a large multimedia screen. Respondents' preferences were assessed through a ranking procedure for structures belonging to different architectural styles. To assess the motivational-value sphere of the respondents, the Systemic Motivation Profile test was used, during which the subjects ranked the values corresponding to the systemic types of motivation.
The results of the study showed the presence of regional and age differences in the emotional perception of buildings belonging to different architectural styles. At the same time, the trend of preference for the architectural form related to the classical style and its modifications of the mid-twentieth century is common to the entire sample. In general, among those who prefer a modern style in architecture, the hedonistic type of personality prevails, which is characterized by individualism and detachment from public interests. Among the respondents who prefer classical trends in architecture, the type of personality that strives for active self-realization and protection of public interests prevails.

Keywords: aesthetics of architecture, systems psychology, motivational and value sphere, classicism and empire, modern architecture, constructivism, magno style, triumph style, modern style in architecture