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Thu, Nov 21



Voices of Colour

The presentation discusses the phenomenological experience of color and place.

Voices of Colour
Voices of Colour

Time & Location

Nov 21, 2024, 5:00 PM – 6:30 PM GMT+1


About the event


‘The thing in itself’, in the philosophy of Immanuel Kant (1724-1804) is a thing because it is independent of any conceptualization or perception by the human mind, postulated by practical reason but existing in a condition which is in principle unknowable and unable to be experienced. In this paper, I will explore ‘the colour in itself’ in the context of architectural discourse, specifically by application to natural and architectural places. I will show that in reality, we very rarely experience colour in isolation. And even when we are immersed in a colour, say, in a forest of green, or the blue city of Chefchaouen in Morocco, the variations of singular colours, are both infinite and in a constant state of flux.  These environments are always experienced as Gestalts of colour, whether through the photographic gaze, or embodied perspectival perception. However, places that do not read as Gestalts that consist of homogeneous colour configurations have their own peculiar expressions, as they appear to eliminate all contingencies and the diachronic. The Modern Movement in architecture, that initially, to a large extent, prioritized order, cleanliness, and the colour white, will be discussed in this regard. Through these scenarios, we hope to show that colour, for architects, is better understood as a condition of the lifeworld, than a thing in itself.  This argument is built on by elaborating on the notions of the visual field and visual world. The latter denotes situational framework with both semiotic and multisensory possibilities. 

Keywords: Colour, Gestalts, Perception, Perspective, Visual Field and Visual World

Presenter: Dr June Joordan, Architect and Senior Lecturer, Univeristy of Cape Town 

is a Professional Architect and Senior Lecturer from Cape Town, South Africa. She has presented research in Japan, Hong Kong, Chandigarh, Cape Town, Prague and Oxford. Her research interests have in recent years evolved from philosophical (phenomenology) to more tangible scientific approaches as she believes science offers a potential  method of reconciling architectural experience with architectural design. As passion projects, she has also done research on Cinematic Space, Spaces of Witchcraft, Liminality, and most recently published on Sacred Spaces with particular reference to Hinduism and its ritualistic and mathematical concretization in Temples in Northern India.

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