Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Blog 3 - Human Environments: Functional Fit

Carlson argues that the aesthetics of human environments be seen as a major area of environmental aesthetics. He places forward the idea of an ecological approach to the aesthetics of human environments and the notion of functional fit. An ecological approach employs an analogy with natural ecosystems and stresses role of functional fit to facilitate the appreciation of both natural and human environments as looking as they should. This approach by Carlson is an interesting one, it makes me wonder how does he determine if a building has functional fitness if it cannot be associated with nature. The images below were taken on my visit to the mall. From the outside the building did seemed lease fascinating to me. But, when I got inside I found it beautiful. The problem is, I know not how to determine whether it meets Carlson's criteria for functional fitness. The building seems to be surrounded by other buildings, and it was hard to identify nature. Can it be argued that, if the building is taking away from, for example the deer population in area that it does not have functional fitness? Or can I argue for functional fitness by highlighting that the fountain in the middle of the bottom picture mimics waterfalls in nature? Is that association even enough to determine what funtional fitness truly is?   

When observing the above photos I look at the intricate design patters of the ceiling and how this patter is perfectly aligned with the fountain beneath it. Because of the complexity, from one with a rudimentary understanding, of the criteria for functional fitness that Carlson supports, I believe that we need not compare architecture to nature but rather focus on the artistic design and the emotion it evokes.

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