As a Paradigm of Design

Kathrin Alischer

März / March - 2023

Staatliche Akademie für Bildende Künste Stuttgart



I am dazzled as soon as I enter. A sterile smell spreads out. It envelops me. I walk down an endless hallway, and am absorbed by an empty white nothingness. I dissolve into a narcotic darkness. A moment later into a trance state. The aesthetics of anaesthesia, the tense duality of perceiving objects in spaces of non-perception, is manifested in three products. The design is based on cultural and historical research and is positioned in relation to the contemporary paradigm shift of the “healing environment”. Surgical lamp, bedside table, and wall mirror form a common clinical scenography as independent anaesthetic objects. The products address attitudes toward surgery, the body, and the clinic and can be read as props of a surgical theatre. They negotiate areas of non-perception and make use of phenomenological as well as associative features, such as glare, sterility and fragmentation.