Whether carefully designed or haphazard, every space is perceived through our five senses and each evokes a positive or negative psychological and physiological response to the flood of sense impressions. As sensitive human beings, the net effect of perceiving and interpreting multiple stimuli is to embrace (or avoid) a “feeling” or an emotion, to feel at ease and engaged or uneasy and uncomfortable.
In the past, the places we lived felt very different from the places we worked. Home was warm and welcoming. The office was driven primarily by technology, function and economics. Recently, however, the qualities of home have migrated into the office via color and texture, materials and shapes, detail, natural and artificial light, and even sound or scent, that are used in new and imaginative ways to create warm and humane work environments. We are seeing a new and rich use of materials, a recognition that human beings experience the world not only through our eyes and intellect, but also through our body and emotions.