The built environment, in some ways, is a transition. In terms of homes, it’s a segue from public life to private. External to internal. Various philosophers, including Martin Heidegger and Gaston Bachelard, have put forth influential theories on home and living, romanticizing country life and condemning the city. Perhaps somewhat surprisingly, some contemporary architects and designers have embraced the philosophers’ spatial and sensory theories while rejecting the idea that “home” can only be created in rural areas.

This course will examine Heidegger’s and Bachelard’s theories alongside contemporary homes in both the country and city. It will also analyze the ways in which design can elicit emotion and create experiences. Lastly, it will propose that a sense of balance and form can arise out of objects regardless of their origin, whether organic or man-made.


Learning Objectives

  • Analyze the spatial philosophies of Heidegger and Bachelard, and the ways in which their theories have influenced modern residential design and architecture.
  • Discover the ways in which pared down design, at first seemingly simplistic, creates opportunity for depth and meaning by bridging the boundaries between exterior and interior, eliciting emotion, and helping to establish a sense of home in any location.
  • Consider design, the timelessness of a space, and the importance of form and materials when creating the emotional space.
  • Examine ways to create spaces dedicated to wellbeing, comfort, and privacy even within the busiest cities.

Pre-Requisite: Basic knowledge of architectural philosophies.