Spatial Sensibility

25 April, 2017

"People who go to a place, look up and understand the space and people who just look at the floor and walk through it, don't have a spatial sensibility."

Ricardo Bofill, Architect

May I take a bit of your time? Thank you.

I've recently realised how important it is to look upwards in the world. Subconsciously I have been looking upwards regularly. In Baroque towns I find my eyes caressing the ornamental facades up high in the square, when walking through London's medieval winding streets, I enjoy looking up at the old Victorian signage and roofscapes. I am aware that we grasp a space and it's scale better by looking upwards and it enables us to navigate through this real world in a more holistic way. We have the urge to mentally construct a space or place before moving through it - it reassures us. At Ric Leplastrier lectures, I recall him urging us to draw, and dissect to understand the landscape, town or roof. I think by practicing this mentally constructing skill, it may help us understanding problems in new spaces for Workshop clients. Humans redefine themselves constantly according to their surroundings. Ricardo Bofill is one of my favourite Architects. In his work, it is evident he understands spatial sensibility in a comprehensive way. We constantly battle against M&E pimples and tirelessly try to keep ceilings clean and free from stuff. I think this is because we aim for the space to feel bigger as your eyes to read upwards to promote this trick. We talk to clients a lot about creating joinery spaces and rooms at two-thirds the height of the main ceiling height, so your body moves between pods in a space. Us Architects should have surpassing spatial sensibilities based upon our comprehensive of spaces and places and it is our duty to understand how this works for our own projects.