Symbiosis of Contrasts as Aesthetic Effect and Its Role in Designing Japanese Spatial Atmosphere

Estetik Etki Olarak Zıtlıkların Simbiyozu


  • İpek Ek



Japanese Architecture, Spatial Atmosphere, Narrative Space, Aesthetic Effect, Japanese Poetry


The word aesthetic has been generally found dangerous by architects. The subjective values related to aesthetics play a role in the perception of the discipline as related to ambiguous notions, in today’s architecture. However, the heart of the discipline resides in the universally recognized qualities/values in the periods of both when it was coined by Aleksander Gottlieb Baumgarten in the eighteenth century and when it was handled with the twentieth century’s phenomenological perspective toward the spatial atmosphere. While aesthetics in today’s architectural design trend proceeds on the basis of sensory experience and sensation, it also includes the concept of emotion that emerges behind this experience and sensation. Thus, while the atmosphere of space becomes the aesthetic object of architecture, it can be said that the phenomenon it corresponds to is a structure consisting of multi-layered architectural components and an organism that can be called more than this structure, including the experiencers and their pasts, and therefore constantly changing. At this point, it seems inevitable for the spatialized space to continue spatializing and thus become a narrative.   When the traces of the nature of the spatializing and narrated space, aiming at the continuity of the experience-oriented movement, are followed on the basis of cultures in history, we encounter Japanese space aesthetics as a profound effect. The phenomena of Japanese culture, especially based on religion and geography, have taken place both in space and in words, and have become the genetic codes that ensure the transfer of culture between generations. Therefore, when a space and a poem are compared in Japanese culture, it can be seen that the creation intentions that shape these two tools, the phenomena conveyed and the messages presented are parallel to each other. The words that play a role in the design of the space and create it, and the spatial experience that is conveyed by the poetic can be read with different aesthetic codes in the genes of Japanese culture. One of these codes is the hanasuki aesthetic effect, which points to the symbiotic existence of opposite concepts and was brought to the literature by Kurokawa Kisho. When the concepts/language that creates the space and the space created in language/words are considered on the basis of hanasuki aesthetic effect, it gains legibility in both contexts.   In this framework, the current study plans to question and read the aesthetic effect that encodes/creates space, first through the explanations of Japanese architects focusing on aesthetics in spatial design, and then through the spatial descriptions that we encounter in the works of Japanese poets. The content of the study focuses on the concept of contrast, which has aesthetic and philosophical foundations in Japanese culture and language and is based on a dynamic and symbiotic relationship, through texts describing the spaces belonging to this culture. The spatial structure connected by special bridges by the aesthetic effect arising from the symbiotic coexistence of opposite concepts in Japanese architecture corresponding to the word in the space and Japanese architecture in the word will be examined, and the correspondence of this effect, which takes place between the experiencer and the experienced (subject and object), in the Western theme, will also be referred.    Therefore, the texts are divided into two groups on the basis of a view (as words in the space) that can be seen as the reflection of cultural codes in the language, and readings of the representational existence of which the space is reconstructed through the references in the language (as space in the word). While the first group is trying to understand the aesthetic codes that appear in the language of the physical creation of the space through the explanations made by Japanese architects on the basis of aesthetics, the second group focuses on understanding the components and structuring of the same aesthetic codes by looking at the representation of the space in literary texts. The aim is to show that the basis of space creation and representation practices that shape Japanese architecture, in theory, corresponds to one of the aesthetic effects that have deep roots in this culture, hanasuki, which is born from the dynamic and symbiotic unity of contrasts. Understanding the past can guide the future: approaching the deficiencies and reservations about aesthetic tendencies in contemporary Western and Eastern architecture, including all architectural traditions and cultures, by looking at the relationship between Japanese aesthetic philosophy and architecture, which has a deep history in this field, can serve as a guide for us on the way to solution and progress.