What is Kansei (chinese,japanese: 感性)?
In Japan, the terminology of Kansei draws back on the German philosopher, Baumgarten. His work AESTHETICA (1750) was the first study that influenced Kansei engineering. The aim of Kansei study is to seek the structure of emotions which exists beneath human behaviors. This structure is reffered to as a person’s Kansei. In the art and design field, Kansei is one of the most important elements which brings the willing or power of creation. In research by Harada, it was found that the attitude of a person in front of art work and design is not based on logic but on Kansei.
The word “Kansei” is interpreted variously and has been used in many researches related with not only design but also other research fields. It is a word which inclusively involves the meaning of words such as sensitivity, sense, sensibility, feeling, aesthetics, emotion, affection and intuition. Fig.1 shows the etymology of Kansei and Chisei (chinese, japanese: 知性) interpreted from Chinese characters, both of which are processed in human minds when they receive the information from the external world. As you see in the figure, Chisei works to increase the knowledge or understanding which is matured by verbal descriptions of logical facts. And Kansei works to increase the creativity through images with feelings or emotions. But we cannot doubt the fact that both Chisei and Kansei have the same level of power to stimulate human behaviors. So far, the practice of most designers has focused on Chisei. Kansei has been regarded as a totally subjective phenomenon so that anyone in the world has their own individual way of absorbing and presenting. In front of a painting, we appreciate it without thinking of any rules but ‘just’ feel a pleasure. (to find out more..)
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text & image from: http://studiolab.io.tudelft.nl/static/gems/publications/00Lee_PWPPlea.pdf
posted by afterrabbit