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Journal of Design Insight

Behind the scenes into the studio works of Maria Lorena Lehman.
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Architectural Psychology Explained

Architectural psychology can be described as a branch of environmental or ecological psychology. This deals with the psychological processes of the interaction between man and his environment, as for example spatial perception, spatial thinking, orientation behaviour, or spatial experience, territorial behaviour, living requirements and satisfaction, local identity. (1)

When an occupant experiences a building, they immediately become involved in an array of overlapping processes that all...

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Can Architecture Arouse Sentiment?

“Architecture arouses sentiments in man. The architecture’s task; therefore, is to make those sentiments more precise.” — Adolf Loos

Architecture is like music, with ability to arouse specific emotions and other reactions at particular moments in time. To arouse sentiment is a delicate task, and the key is to engage occupants. Human mood, behavior and physiology will all benefit from such an awakening.

To arouse precise human sentiments,...

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Sensory Design: Lessons from a Tea Cup

“Architecture is basically a container of something. I hope they will enjoy not so much the teacup, but the tea.”
— Yoshio Taniguchi

This quote highlights why sensory design is indispensable. The act of enjoying the tea is fostered by the teacup just as sensory architecture enhances occupant experience. Both the teacup and sensory design must be sensitive to human needs.

With interactive design, a sensory teacup could integrate user sensory system factors like...

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Environmental Psychology: What Every Architect Should Ask Themselves

Understanding principles about environmental psychology will help architects to design with greater awareness. The following are ten important questions inspired by some of the major themes that make up the study of environmental psychology.

Although some may look simple at first glance, the questions are really quite complex as you delve into the inner-workings of human perception, cognition and behavior. The more you understand about how occupants interact with their environments,...

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7 Design Tips for Best Architectural Acoustics

Architectural design requires that acoustics be well thought out and coordinated. The sound spectrum must remain clear without portions distorted or missing. The paper, Acoustics and Sound Systems in Architectural Design, emphasizes how acousticians should be part of the design team early on. The author describes how it is important to avoid overlapping sound waves that project into a common space – this interference is what can distort the sound spectrum.(1)

The following are 7...

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Architectural Building for All the Senses: Bringing Space to Life

All too often, architectural designs rely more heavily on just one primary sense – the visual one. The other senses are unfortunately frequently neglected. This is unfortunate since it is through the senses that architecture can have profound effect. For instance, architectural building can more truly relate to the surrounding culture through all of the senses. Addressing historic, traditional or present-day cultural patterns can make a work of architecture a success...

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Can Architectural Features Help Your Brain?

When traveling through space you use certain cues to help you navigate. Your senses help determine things like orientation, distance and direction. During navigation, many moments arise for decision-making and your brain is a key player during this process. Within a building, architectural features send signals during the navigation process. The brain uses sensorial cues to help you travel within an environment – providing you with enough information to find your...

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The “Extended Mind” Evolves With Architectural Design

Human awareness is not as perfect as you might think. We humans are easily distracted and our attention can be fleeting. So, this notion of an “extended mind” seems to make sense. The idea as described in the Discover article entitled The Brain: How Google Is Making Us Smarter explains that the human mind is really a system made up by the human brain extending into “parts of the environment”. Ultimately, the mind comes to depend on its environment for...

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Using Sound to Influence Architectural Experience

Have you ever toyed with the notion of designing a space strictly based on sound quality? Perhaps acoustics have played a major role in certain projects where sound formulas served to construct space. But — what about “aural architecture”? It becomes interesting to understand what happens to architecture beyond physics. When experienced via our auditory senses, architecture gains another dimension that significantly influences occupants. In the book Spaces Speak, Are...

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Urban Architecture – A Design Process of Co-Creation

INTRODUCTION – ADAPTIVE URBAN ARCHITECTURE

Urban design within cities around the world has impact upon the citizens they serve. As environmental designers, it is important to continuously evolve how cities beneficially influence citizens as they live their daily lives within these urban areas. A critical way by which to accomplish this is to design urban architecture within such cities so they cooperate and collaborate together to yield a relationship of co-creation with their...

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