Notions about Gestalt

Research questions

What constitutes gestalt, and why it is important for human beings in conceiving spaces at all?

Gestalt. Floor decoration, S. Salvador/Venice



  • Gehmann, Ulrich/Johansson, Michael/Reiche Martin (2015): Gestalt Thinking, in Maragiannis, A. (Ed.) Final Paper/Proceedings of the Digital Research in the Humanities and Arts conference, DRHA2014, London
  • Gehmann, Ulrich/Johansson, Michael/Reiche, Martin: gestalt. Digital Research in the Humanities and Arts, Dublin 2015


  • Gestalt is essential for orientation in space
  • It is not identical with pattern, form, or shape
  • Gestalt can be technically expressed as a system, but is not identical with it
  • One can conceive gestalt as a specific kind of order
  • Planned vs. unplanned gestalten, relating to made (planned) vs. evolving (unplanned, spontaneous) orders
  • Gestalt delivers identity
  • Gestalt presents a structured whole
  • Impression of wholeness essential for making believable worlds

People involved

U. Gehmann, M. Johansson, M. Reiche, Dominik Rinnhofer, Andreas Sieß

References internal

  • Exhibition Ideal Spaces 2016, 
  • DRHA Dublin Conference 2015, DRHA Greenwich Conference 2014

References external

  • Troll, Wilhelm (1926): Goethes Morphologische Schriften. Jena; Eugen Diederichs
  • Lynch, Kevin (1960): The Image of the City. Cambridge, Mass.; MIT Press
  • Schimmel, Hanno, Hrsg. (2000): Gestalt. Erscheinungsformen in Architektur und Kunst. Frankfurt/Main; Anabas
  • Ungers, Oswald M. (2011): Morphologie (City Metaphors). Köln; Walther Kön