Ecological Perception: Seeing Systems

Joanna Boehnert, University of Colorado, EcoLabs

 

Abstract

Graphic designers have the unique ability to make hidden ecological processes visible by revealing relationships, patterns and dynamics in complex socio-ecological systems. This paper describes how communication design can support relational perceptual practices and even nurture ecological perception. It presents specific methods to harness the latent potential of graphic design to communicate the context, comparisons, connections and causality. It proposes that aesthetics experiences can provoke deep perceptual insights supporting new ways of perceiving our relationship with the environment, our ecological context. In ways described in this paper, graphic design has the potential to nurture the  bility to 'see systems' - supporting both ecological perception and ecological literacy.

 

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