Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Lilliputian lounge access

From Susan Stewart, On Longing: Narratives of the Miniature, the Gigantic, the Souvenir, the Collection:
[T]here may be an actual phenomenological correlation between the experience of scale and the experience of duration. In a recent experiment conducted by the School of Architecture at the University of Tennessee, researchers had adult subjects observe scale-model environments 1/6, 1/12, and 1/24 of full size. The environments represented lounges and included chipboard furniture as well as scale figures. The subjects were asked to move the scale figures through the environment, to imagine humans to be that scale, and to identify activities appropriate for that space. Then they were asked to imagine themselves to be of "lounge scale" and picture themselves engaging in activities in the lounge. Finally, they were asked to tell the researchers when they felt that they had been engaged in such activities for 30 minutes. The experiment showed that "the experience of temporal duration is compressed relative to the clock in the same proportion as scale-model environments being observed are compressed relative to the full-sized environment."

1 comment:

  1. Hmmm. When I am actually in a lounge, often my sense is of time passing slowly....