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From an Architecture of Sign to an Architecture of Consciousness

'Architecture and Phenomenology'

Second International Conference, Kyoto Seika University

Einführung in das Projekt From an Architecture of Sign to an Architecture of Consciousness.

Introduction

This paper introduces the project From an Architecture of Sign to an Architecture of Consciousness. The work-in-progress investigates the influence of the linguistic turn on the development of responsive architecture focusing mainly on the exploration of the object/subject, user/architecture-relationship.
The term responsive architecture was coined by Nicholas Negroponte in the late sixties, when he proposed to overcome the architectural restraint, enabling everybody to articulate his or her own spaces by interacting with a technical augmented architecture. In the course of our investigations the question arose how this interaction between architecture and its user operates. Therefore, it touches upon the question how the architectural user understands the environment. On the other hand, it attempts to throw light on the question in which ways a responsive system – architecture – replies to its user. As far as these aspects are concerned, it must be stated that feasible answers are not only relevant to responsive architecture, but also to architecture in general.
The current definition of the user/architecture-relationship within the responsive architecture theory is based on the cybernetic idea of the sixties. Thus the interaction between architecture and its user is equalized to the communication between human and machine. This mechanical communication theory, however, lacks of precision when describing user/architecture-relationship.
For that very reason the following paper attempts to refine this relationship by using various concepts of neuro- and cognitive sciences.

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