Assignment 6

What is beauty? – A close reading

I did a close reading on a piece of text that considers four types of answers to the question, what is beauty? I printed the text and read through a few times, underlining parts I deemed important to the question, then made notes to understand what was written.

The text breaks down various ways of looking at how we consider beauty, the four answers given look at simple quality, aesthetic qualities, non-aesthetic qualities and judgement. By stating that something is of a simple quality can close down any further discussion, we as humans always engage in discussion about how something looks aesthetically, we compare differences and back up those reasons with our own judgements. Another way of looking at beauty is to consider the aesthetic qualities present and there are so many terms to choose from, as well as emotional approach and the way we think, it’s all very complex.

Philosopher, Immanuel Kant, believed that beauty was important because it connects humans to the mystery of being, reminding us to be better within ourselves. He wrote that beauty is not about the physical properties of an object and that aesthetic judgements are a matter of taste.

Firstly, what are my own ideas of the concept of beauty in interior design? If a design or a space brings me feelings of happiness, I consider it to be beautiful. If something tastes amazing, I consider it to be beautiful. If I’m pleasantly surprised by an image or act then I consider it to be beautiful. I admire designers with innovative design that look at a more holistic approach, designs that will have a more positive impact socially and environmentally. The future of design needs to look at the wider impact on communities, how can people collaborate to want to make a difference, to be more inclusive. There must still be processes and imagination but more thoughtfulness and understanding about sustainability is important. By reducing the negative impacts on the environment we can create environments and experiences that will help have a positive impact on health, economic and social life.

I made a list of the visual qualities I find important for interior design; balance, colour, pattern, movement, scale, shape and harmony. The physical qualities of form, proportion, colour, texture, arrangement and materials are all important when putting together my presentation. I also did a mind-map, which includes physical qualities as well as emotional qualities. This mind-map I hope to transform into a visual version.

My mind map exploring my thoughts on Beauty

I have taken this information and made an A3 illustrated presentation of my own ideas of the concept of beauty in interior design, titled ‘What is Beauty?’. I have annotated each image explaining my reasons for using them.

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