Design permeates every dimension of our lifeworld, from the products we consume and the built environments in which we live to the adorned and stylized beings that we are and the natural preserves where we seek relief from the stressful bustle of urban life. Design is where contrasting values of functionality and aesthetic pleasure converge. At the core of design is the human soma, an active, perceptive subjectivity that creates and evaluates design but is also its cultivated product. This collection of thirteen essays explores the somaesthetics of design in multiple fields: from ritual, craft, and healthcare to architecture, urbanism, and the new media of extended realities.
Richard Shusterman is a prominent pragmatist philosopher. Author of several highly influential books in philosophical aesthetics and founder of the field of somaesthetics, he is the Dorothy F. Schmidt Eminent Scholar in the Humanities at Florida Atlantic University.
Bálint Veres is a Hungarian scholar of aesthetics and an award-winning teacher. He is a tenured Associate Professor at the Moholy-Nagy University of Art and Design, Budapest (MOME), and the head of its PhD-in-Practice Program.
List of Figures
Notes on Contributors
Introduction: Somaesthetics and Design Culture
Richard Shusterman and Bálint Veres
Part 1 Studies on Limitations 1 A World Is Born: Craftsmanship, Mediality, and the Somatic Implications of Plato’s Timaeus Bálint Veres
2 From Making to Lighting a Candle: On Functions, Meanings, and Bodies in Ritual Design
3 Can That Be Taught? Lessons in Embodied Knowledge from Memoir Writing for Craft and Design Education
4 Soma and Symbol: The Bridging Function of Style in Design History and Culture
Part 2 Bodies, Senses, and Power 5 Sensing Kalasatama: Design Culture and Neoliberal Bodyhood
6 Bodies Under the Weather: Selective Permeability, Political Affordances, and Architectural Hostility
Matthew Crippen with Illustrations by Mareike Joleen Timm
7 Across the Threshold: A Somaesthetic Approach to the Design of Extended Realities
Tom McGuirk and Alan Summers
Part 3 Transformative Experiences 8 Bespoke Healthcare Design
Dina Shahar and Jonathan Ventura
9 Sensory Activation in Design, Art, and Architecture – a Somaesthetic Perspective
Else Marie Bukdahl
10 Designing for Somaesthetic Transformation
Richard Shusterman and Dag Svanæs
All scholars, students, critics and art and design practitioners and theorists interested in somatic approaches to design.