New Paper 2 (2014)

Where Heidegger met Peirce: Phenomenological Visual Communication

(Currently submitted to a journal and being peer-reviewed)
© Dave Wood 2013

In this theoretical paper the ambition of visually revealing a lived experience will be explored through a synthesis with the design discipline of Visual Communication and the philosophies of Martin Heidegger and Charles Sanders Peirce. It theorises how Visual Communication could visualise the phenomenological ‘essence’ of a lived experience through the use of a visual hermeneutic circle of interpretation. In doing so Visual Communication would provide fresh inspirational data for an interaction designer to draw on when designing future user experiences. This paper proposes that phenomenological themes of an experience can be revealed and interpreted within a communicational situation using Visual Communication techniques. As a theoretical paper it investigates the synthesis required from where a new Visual Phenomenological Methodology could emerge. This synthesis fuses Heideggerian Hermeneutic Phenomenology with Peircean pragmatic semiotics. It is neither what Don Ihde describes as postphenomenology, nor is it just hermeneutics using pictures, but a new and exciting advance in design thinking with practical outcomes.

Heidegger, Hermeneutic Circle, Interaction Design, Phenomenology, Pierce, Semiotics, Visual Communication

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