Visual Design - formerly BILDNERISCHE GESTALTUNG and Department of Sculptural Design - extends the teaching of competences in dealing with the tools of visualization and design in research to studies dealing with the development and examination of new design techniques and procedures and their effectiveness. The focus lies on color, the combination of analog and digital representation tools, and the study of body techniques. In addition, the research is devoted to the examination of artefacts produced in design, which are discussed under the term pictorial design (Bildentwurf). The research topics are regularly flanked by exhibitions and conferences, which are translated into publications. The thematic orientation of the research entails an interdisciplinary entanglement.

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In the architectural context, the phenomenon of color develops its effect as an interaction of subject, substance, space, light and time. Research into this complex mechanism of action can lead to new creative strategies for dealing with colour as an atmospheric, spatio-temporal phenomenon. A phenomenologically founded, architecture-specific color theory places colors as light and as substance phenomena in the context of space, material, and time. In the field of design, new categories open up for the conception and order of spaces that go far beyond the possibilities of geometry.

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Buchhandlung Walther König

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The importance of manual practices and the mutual connections between conscious, intentional thinking and pre-conscious physical action in the context of design plays a central role in our research. The role of the physical, the manual, the interaction with material and sensory perception also opens up new aspects in the discussion of methods, for visual media are not only tools, but also impulses in creative processes. We explore the relevance and potential of creative articulation in a variety of cooperations, also across faculties, in such a way that students are also involved in the exciting process of research.

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Designing Tools

The research profile of the Department of Visual Arts focuses on methods and tools of creative action in the context of architecture. Because buildings and spaces have a fundamental influence on human life, this discourse cannot be conducted separately and reduced to technical aspects. Because at the centre of every design and production process are the people who actively design and receive a work, a space or a product, who interact with one another. A substantial component of our work is the exploration and further development of visual tools, practices and strategies. Digital image media have caused a quantum leap in the production of images. But new media in art have usually not replaced the existing media, but supplemented them. We see it as an opportunity to discuss image matters in a new way over and over again.

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The impression of real buildings is not only based on optical information about their appearance, but also on their appearance, which unfolds in the immediate physical experience. Architectural images must reflect this. Unlike experienced reality, which touches every human being emphatically, not every image does so. Especially when an architectural concept pursues a phenomenological approach, we need new forms of the architectural image. Hybrid techniques and pictorial forms enable individual, reactive practices of pictorial production, which - depending on the conceptual approach of a project - constantly produce new pictorial forms and interpretations.

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RWTH University Library