Pioneers of Sensory Development Education: Christof Drexel and Hugo Kükelhaus Open Access Deposited
Two German pioneers of sensory development education, Christof Drexel (1886-1979) and Hugo Kükelhaus (1900-1984) pursued methodical investigations into perceptual principles of cognition and design in order to discover the ways in which aesthetic principles can develop and guide sensory response. Drexel and Kükelhaus traveled parallel investigative paths, both merging formal aesthetic practices with perceptual psychology. It was not until 1950, when these visionary thinkers finally met in person, that they joined forces to present their discoveries which determined that experiences are momentary intersections between internal and external realities, and are intrinsically intertwined in the deepest levels of consciousness, publicly. Both Drexel and Kükelhaus believed in the value of using the senses as pedagogy and that they should be integrated into every level of education. Correspondence between Drexel and Kükelhaus after 1950 illuminates the theoretical paths and applicative forms generated through the interplay of experimental psychology and applied aesthetic practice. This paper provides insights into the artistic and scientific dynamics based on Drexel’s examination of archetypical imagery and the psychic line, and the sensory development applications designed by Kükelhaus.
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