Luxury advertising and recognizable artworks: new insights on the “art infusion” effect

Alessandro M. Peluso, Giovanni Pino*, Cesare Amatulli, Gianluigi Guido

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

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    Purpose - This research advances current knowledge about art infusion, which is the ability of art to favorably influence the assessment of consumer products. In particular, the research aims to investigate the effectiveness of artworks that evoke their creators’ most recognizable style in luxury advertising. 

    Design/methodology/approach - The research encompasses three studies – two conducted online and one in a real consumption situation. The first study explores the effect that a recognizable vs non-recognizable painter’s style has on consumers’ judgments about luxury products. The second and third studies explore the moderating roles of desire to signal status and desire for distinction, respectively, which are relevant to advertisers interested in targeting these individual differences. 

    Findings - Advertisements that incorporate artworks that evoke a painter’s most recognizable style enhance the advertised products’ perceived luxuriousness. Consumers with a higher desire to signal status exhibit greater purchasing intention in response to recognizable artworks. By contrast, consumers with a higher desire for distinction exhibit greater purchasing intention when the painter’s style in the featured artwork is less recognizable. 

    Practical implications - The results provide marketers with suggestions on how to select and incorporate visual artworks into luxury brand communication: they could focus on recognizable vs non-recognizable artworks based on whether their main goal is to communicate status or distinctiveness. 

    Originality/value - This research offers novel insights into the practical value of art infusion by showing when and for whom the beneficial effects of pairing art with luxury products are more likely to occur.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)2192-2206
    Number of pages15
    JournalEuropean Journal of Marketing
    Issue number11-12
    Early online date1 Dec 2017
    Publication statusPublished - Dec 2017


    • Artistic style
    • Desire for distinction
    • Luxury products
    • Recognizability
    • Status signalling
    • Visual artworks


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