“Now you have it.”
To me, the definition of an aesthetic experience is the emotional response to a stimuli. Simply put, if you feel something out of whatever you see, hear, touch, smell or taste, you are having an aesthetic experience. Yes, this means that virtually anything can be an aesthetic experience, whether that’s positive or negative.
It goes without saying that whether you are having a positive or negative aesthetic experience is purely subjective – every person will feel different things for different stimuli. This is due to the fact that everyone has different levels of connection with whatever they are perceiving.
For example, Bob really loves heavy metal, so he really digs the new album Skrillex came out with recently. Meanwhile, Jane really hates heavy metal and so when she received the latest Skrillex CD from Bob, she decided to burn it in a sacrificial ritual for the higher entities. In this case, because Bob and Jane’s interests are different, naturally the type of aesthetic experience they go through will also be different.
Another example would be: Bob was pushed into a lake as a kid and nearly drowned to death until he was saved by someone. He has since feared the water and refuses to go anywhere near it. This clearly shows the level of connection Bob has towards water – he fears it. Furthermore, the more he dislikes the water, the more negative his aesthetic experience would be. Meanwhile, Sandy loves the water – she practically grew up in it. Being a passionate athletic swimmer who loves what she does, her aesthetic experience in the water would be positive, and as with Bob, the more she loves the water, the more positive her experience is.
Simply put, the more connection you feel towards the stimuli, it’ll be more positive, and vice versa. This easily proves that aesthetic experiences are subjective. Remember, connections are most often formed through past experiences.
P.S. Hope you enjoy your free trypophobia gift.