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Proceedings of the 18th National Conference on the Beginning Design Student

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Design -- Study and teaching, Creative thinking -- Study and teaching, Design (philosophy)


The cognition and description of spatial conditions are essential components of any foundation for design and the visual arts. However, the ability to discern subtle spatial distinctions and the limits of spatial boundaries is often clouded by habit and apparent familiarity with the conditions in question. For example, one thinks one "knows" the spatial make-up of one's bedroom, but can one real ly see the space of the room from a position outside of this perceived familiarity? Can pre-cognitive knowledge be converted into critical understanding? Or, to invert the question, how can one know a space that one sees with new eyes? Perhaps we need to take Paul Valery to heart when he suggests that; "to see is to forget the name of the thing one sees."


Presented at the 18th National Conference on the Beginning Design Student, Portland State University, Portland, Oregon. March 14-16, 2002.

© Portland State University, published by Portland State University, Department of Architecture

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