According to the researchers, while writers and artists from Byron to Picasso have perpetuated the notion of the amorous artist, the new study may be the first to offer up some real proof.
“Creative people are often considered to be very attractive and get lots of attention as a result. They tend to be charismatic and produce art and poetry that grab people’s interest,” said the study author Dr Daniel Nettle, a lecturer in psychology at Newcastle University’s School of Biology.
The study of 425 British citizens included a sampling of visual artists and poets. The participants were asked about how much poetry and visual art they created, their psychiatric history, and their sexual encounters since age 18.
More sexual partners for creatives
In comparison to an average of 3 for non-creative people, the average number of sexual partners for poets and creative artists was between 4 and 10. The investigators reported in the November 29 issue of The Proceedings of the Royal Society that the more creative a person was, the higher the number of sexual adventures.
Nettle speculated that sexual exploration may be encouraged by the artistic personality.
“It could also be that very creative types lead a bohemian lifestyle and tend to act on more sexual impulses and opportunities, often purely for experience’s sake, than the average person would,” he said. “Moreover, it’s common to find that this sexual behaviour is tolerated in creative people. Partners, even long-term ones, are less likely to expect loyalty and fidelity from them.”