The Architecture of Life: Home as Experience

The Architecture of Life - Christopher K. Travis

Thursday, September 6, 2007

Home as Experience

I believe a “home” is not really a building, but rather an emotional experience. A house is made of bricks and sticks, but a home is of the heart.

That experience does not live in a particular building, but inside each of us, and is built over a lifetime. Modern science suggests that it arises over many generations within each family and exists as complex web of emotional/environmental associations in our brains.

Some aspects of our environment stimulate us and help us feel good, and some cause us to respond negatively.

We do not generally think about these critical internal assessments because they are so basic to our everyday experience.

Most of those associations are subconscious. They are part of every decision we make about our living space, but we seldom think about them. They are merely threads in the fabric of our lives.

Each person has different experience of home, different tastes, different needs and lifestyle. For every individual and every family, we believe there is a true home, a home that fits who they are, that nurtures them and expresses their true selves.

When we consider buying, designing, building, redecorating or remodeling a home, a lot of thought goes into our decisions - and sometimes - a lot of anxiety.

But if the experience we seek with that purchase is a suite of feelings, how can we discover it by thinking?

How can you spend your money wisely, make good design or purchase decisions, or effectively redecorate your home if you do not truly know which specific conditions will give you the emotional experience you desire?

How can you reliably purchase or design a home that helps you feel comfortable and safe, happy and at peace, satisfied and proud?