How rooms and architecture affect mood and creativity

There have been a number of strides towards a more rigorously scientific approach to design and architecture in the past few decades.  A number of articles and research have been published on studies introducing neuroscience and psychology into fields such as architecture and other facets of design.  

Salk Institute in La Jolla, CA

An institute inspired by a space's ability to influence mood and creativity

 In an article featured in Scientific American Mind, evidence of the coexistence between neuroscience and design emerges from a number of recent studies. I’m sure many are at least fundamentally familiar with the impact proper lighting can have on mood and behavior as well as color’s relationship to our reaction to and interaction with a space. However, there is a myriad of additional architectural and design features that have substantial affects on the user that may not be common knowledge.  Some examples include how the height of ceilings can influence the ability to think abstractly versus concretely and how natural landscape views can increase attention and the ability to  concentrate (particularly important in elementary schools and among students with ADD).  Another very interesting study used fMRI technology to show that viewing objects with sharp edges and corners activates the amygdala, the area of the brain associated with fear processing and emotional arousal.  Given this information, it has been suggested that designing a space filled with soft edges may be beneficial for spaced such as waiting rooms or counseling facilities, promoting a sense of emotional rest and comfort.  It would especially behoove a number of industries to invest in and promote the progression toward and development in the science of Environmental Psychology. 


Salk Institute in La Jolla, CA

Salk Institute

To read the article for yourself, click here



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