Atmosphere, and in turn atmospherics, illustrate a particular quality of design. A quality that eludes to a perception of mood or character, or rather a quality that fundamentally is sensed. Implied in explorations of embodied practice, whether that is defined by embodied experience or described as the construction of embodied images; to consider atmosphere as a tool for design we must understand it as both an aesthetic quality and a conceptual framework. Atmosphere as a design quality is to expand beyond this restrictive idea of the five senses. To not only acknowledge but to address with intention, the nature of the sensing self, the process of perception and the nature of appearances. An exploration of atmospheres as multi-sensory experience and a reference for design is discussed through the works of Swiss architect Peter Zumthor and renowned Finnish architect and theorist Juhani Pallasmaa. The framing of embodied practice moving towards furthering the potential of embodied education and by asserting particular reference to the growing establishment of phenomenological architecture, it is then possible to direct a slither of light to illuminate the absence of critical discourse in fashion design practice. By exploring the existing relationship between fashion and embodied practice, Atmospherics proposes that a new language can be initiated for critical discussion on existing fashion practice, and a perspective on the potential for a new movement of thought for fashion is established.
‘atmospheres/atmospherics’ was a year long research and coursework project. The research focus of the project looked at phenomenology as a philosophical concept, and comapring existing phenomenological readings of design practices such as architecture, and exploring similar framworks within fashion. Fashion is situated at a crossway between object and the body, between design and art, between maker and wearer. The project had a focus on exploring sensory aesthetics and exploring that concept through experimental design, fashion objects and philosophical rumination.