THE CITY IDENTITY: COMMUNICATION DESIGN, COLOUR AND SOUND
The modern urban environment interlinks social and territorial transformation that determine powerful mutations in the landscape. A metaphor used to define the urban field is that of the city as an organism, because its system characteristics and its incessant transformation. Whereas during mutation organisms keep some coherence that makes identity recognizable, not always the urban politics coherently preserve present social identities.
In the inhabited spaces the sense of belonging is immediately comparable to people, to their cultures, to their memories.
Nowadays the quickness in which transformations happen doesn’t create easily the necessary conditions for acceptance of change: from one side memory needs continuity and linear returns; from the other transformations crate new necessities and new attitudes to answer the complexity in evolution. Where the relationship between territory and sense of belonging to places come to loose, territories begin a progressive refusal and consequent degradation of the spaces themselves, perceived as foreign.
In a time of “dematerialization” and ever more virtual experiences sharing, to “resemanticize” the territory, returning a sense of belonging and identity, is in the first place a design aim.
The colour-image is the most symptomatic and symbolic component of the urban transformation; today colour dominates cities, the perceptive saturation is so that generates disorientation because of the impossibility to recognize shapes under the rainbow of colours and the artificial lights.
The current city is essentially a visual, acoustic and kinetic manifestation, but it’s also a psychic landscape not lacking of vacuity of sense and discontinuity.
It’s argued the strategic necessity of a design that projects by the functions extension and improves its influence as a system that catches the identities, giving back meaning to territories and improvement strategies. A new design philosophy becomes necessary, which action strategic centre is in people’s life environment for the extension from human design to ambient design.
Sound also belongs to the strategic requalification project. R. M. Schafer said that today the world suffers from the overflow of sounds: there is too much acoustic information thus only a small part of it can be clearly perceived.
Regarding this are mentioned some didactic project experiences done at Politecnico di Milano, Facoltà del Design, that keep a planning approach sustainable to the urban landscape, starting from perceptive aspects and in particular the chromatic and acoustic ones.
The problem of context configuration is necessary to come to an aesthetic of relations; therefore design as a communicative process, as a “relation aesthetic”, not only as an production or product aesthetic problem.
Everything is known through perceptive experience and the integration of different sensorial stores creating multimedial and synaesthetic experiences.
In many occasions the lack of project of an anthropocentric system, originated a real perceptive, cognitive and semantic disorientation.
Design task is to provide the necessary guide lines to rebuild the account of identities, as far as making visible the invisible: the memory and the future.