Journey Through The Senses & Nairobi Design presented this programe on October 7th,2023.

Synaesthesia for Design: Common Ground or Terra Incognita?” is a panel discussion presented by Journey Through The Senses & Nairobi Design. What can design theory and practice derive from congenital synesthesia? Manifestations of synesthesia are consistent, immersive, purpose-driven and experiential. There are many more synesthetes among artists and many synesthetes choose creativity as careers or leisure time activities. Numerous types of congenital synesthesia span all the human senses and embrace language, sound, social and other cognitive elements. How can non-synesthetes tap into synesthesia’s so much venerated experiential benefits? Are there nonspeculative inroads into its efficient practical applications beyond inspiration and mimicry?

The introductury Talk will be guided by Neuropsychology Professor Julia Simner, University of Sussex, UK. As an expert on the matter, seeing her work as the Science Officer for the UK Synaesthesia Association, she will explain how the rare neurological trait of synaesthesia can give rise to ‘a merging of the senses’ – such as seeing colours just from hearing sounds.

The Talk will be followed by a discussion and dialogue between multiple panelists. Dr Michael Haverkamp, who developed methods for cross-sensory harmonization in the automotive industry, will discuss how Synesthetic perception should be considered a modern instrument of design as it provides significant input and a high potential which can enhance creativity. The President of Journey Through The Senses, James Wannerton, who dedicated his career to raising general awareness of synaesthesia and other related neurodiverse traits via media strands and art/science collaborations, will talk about his own experience and about offering the tools to excercise more control on this condition.  Head of Nairobi DesignAdrian Jankowiak, who combines structure and empathy in his work and play especially after finding out his form of synaesthesia, will share his experienece, particulary how the condition affected and enhanced his mental processes as a designer. Chief Research Officer of Journey Through The Senses, Anton Sidoroff-Dorso who founded the Russian Synaesthesia Community and was head of the synaesthesia research group at the Centre for Multidisciplinary Research of Contemporary Childhood, will teach about the recent research findings on congenital synesthesia as related to a set of generative mechanisms that selectively transform reality at the pre-cognitive, perceptual level.

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