INTER-GENERATIONAL LIVING: DESIGNING TOWARD A HEALING SENSE OF PLACE
This project is based on the notion that an environment which expresses a healing sense of place can positively affect a person’s wellbeing through a sensory experience. Gesler describes the various dimensions of the healing environment as being comprised of four main aspects: built, natural, social, and symbolic (Gesler, 2003). When these four aspects relate to one another, a place can become meaningful in its ability to draw on its character and allow a person to develop their own sense of personal identity, security, and belonging (Pred, 1983). The sense of place is experienced most often through the built environment, which has been shown to affect the healing process due to its ability to affect the five senses (Gesler, 2003). This is the haptic architecture of the skin, and muscle, which recognizes the realms of hearing, smell, and taste, in addition to sight (Pallasma, 1994). As we experience a place and begin to develop our own self identity within that space, it becomes a part of our own body and being (Pallasma, 1994). Sensory experience is integrated through the body, allowing the body to change as a result of environmental change. The question becomes what environmental aspects make us heal? Once a place is experience as healing, occupying that space becomes a desire rather than a necessity. This project will explore what practices and architectural applications can contribute to developing a sensory experience within a healing sense of place, as it pertains to the inter-generational living project in Seattle, Washington.