Modern Aspects Of Design Organization Of Urban Environment Visual Culture


The article describes the main cultural and aesthetic aspects of the organization of a subject-spatial gray in modern city architecture. The environmental image develops and functions in different ways in the professional consciousness of a designer who forms the environment and in the everyday consciousness of a consumer of this environment. Any object of architectural design is a social object, intended to be used by the population. Its necessary aspect is convenience and comfort, taking into account safety both for a person and environment. The design environment must also meet functional requirements, culture, and aesthetics. It is important that all architectural forms are proportionate to the surrounding buildings and large-scale projects. Visual analysis of a landscape map, all components and territorial objects that are the most important components in the design of urban environment design. The structure of environmental images always includes some stable spatial forms that are present in all cultures and are used by us almost unconsciously. Structures of sculptural, pictorial, and ornamental type play a specific role in organizing the design of an object environment. The interaction of design with architecture in a real urban environment creates new spatial and behavioral effects. It is now possible to create integrity of the urban space, taking into account the cultural, aesthetic, and psychological aspect, with the help of color and artificial textures, creating complex coloristic compositions from individual objects.

Keywords: Environment, image, design, culture, aesthetics, color


Design today actively focuses on the use of ultra-modern technologies and scientific achievements, which are continuously introduced into the everyday life of design creativity. And this allows the design to master more and more new areas and spheres.

The image of environment, its structure and sociocultural functions, its place in various types of creativity, the peculiarities of its study – all this is a constant subject of research in the field of design and architecture. Psychological analysis showed that the image of environment is not a mirror image of it. Structure of the image includes emotional reactions of the subject, a bearer of the image to various components of the environment. These reactions introduce certain distortions both in elements of the image and in the relationship between them. Any image parameters can be distorted to a greater or lesser extent: spatial (shape, size), temporal (rhythm, speed), modal (color, texture), intense (brightness, illumination).

Level and nature of such distortions act as a kind of code for the subject's internal states. Adequacy of the image of environment depends not only on its emotional saturation and not only on properties and abilities of the subject. In the psychology of perception, the article defines objective qualities of the subject environment, which most significantly affect success or failure of images in conditions of a lack of information about the subject. First of all, these are topological qualities, closely related to the main subject-spatial structure of the environment. Violation of the topological characteristics of the medium leads to the disintegration of an image of the medium.

Problem Statement

The main issue of the article is revealing modern theoretical and practical aspects of the organization of urban environment design. The article also discusses problems in the field of visual culture of the urban environment.

The structure of environmental images includes some stable spatial forms that are present in all cultures and are used almost unconsciously. Special attention is paid to the problems arising in those types of creativity that are directly related to the formation of the subject-spatial environment (Cerver, 2000). In design, the image arises at the intersection of requirements coming from the social environment, and some invariant representations – “patterns” set by the “style of the era”.

The interaction of design with architecture in a real urban environment creates new spatial and behavioral effects. The saturation of the environment with meanings that are constantly generated, read, and interpreted, gives grounds to apply the concepts and methods of the theory of sign systems to the analysis of the environment. For the formation of meanings in the environment, both unique units with aesthetic characteristics – images, and clichéd, reusable elements with more or less stable content – signs are equally important. The entire environment is viewed as a system of languages, each of which serves a specific sphere of spiritual and practical human activity.

The spatial image is one of the components of integral image of the environment, including the urban one. The plurality of images of the urban environment is associated with the variety of activities and behaviors that a city offers to its inhabitants. Each type of urban activity addresses its own type of environment, assumes its own vision of space, addresses its own set of things, sets its own behavioral stereotypes. The combination of aesthetics and function creates an optimal comfortable environment for a person in a modern metropolis, filling it with semantic content, emotionally unloading or harmonizing space as an environmental dominant. Color and color combinations help to create a certain emotional and psychological environment. Contrast, tension, dynamism, smoothness, and calmness are those emotional states that can be created using color (Lenclos & Lenclos, 1999).

Unfortunately, modern psychologists do not pay enough attention to color in interior design and urban environment. Color affects individual feelings and cannot obey only the logic of utilitarian requirements. In other words, an architectural polychrome space always, especially in a building of great public importance, must not only meet practical requirements, but also have a beneficial effect on people, be highly aesthetic. If the ideological and artistic function dominates in the interior, achieving a high aesthetic sound becomes the main goal of an architect. The design of the color of an architectural environment takes into account this not only aesthetic and psychological impact, but also the symbolic meaning, traditions, culture, religion of the people. At present, the problem of designing not an individual, but the entire system of the environment, taking into account all aspects, is becoming urgent.

Research Questions

An essential role is played by color, which is one of the most important means of aesthetic organization of the environment. Constructivist architects have contributed to the development of a new direction, expanding the range of the new form, its relationship with the objective laws of human perception and the relationship between an architectural form and a new functional and constructive basis. The design features of monumental and decorative art are taken into account when designing.

Color combinations are a certain sign system that is embedded in the human mind. The concept of “decorativeness” serves as the basic basis for the formation of professional thinking in the design of environmental space.

Color compositions can visually unite various technological equipment. Active highlighting of freestanding objects, columns and other equipment, and architectural elements contribute to the increase in expressiveness. Color can separate the main and accompanying, accentuate certain types. An atectonic coloration can visually destroy a form deliberately. A wide variety of compositional problems can be solved with the help of color. Thus, designers and architects have broad prospects for organizing the urban environment. Due to the flexibility of technological connections, designers have a sufficient degree of freedom in the layout of equipment and structures, which allows them, without violating the requirements of technology and economics, to solve artistic problems (Vasilenko et al., 2019).

Using color features and opportunities related to the means or patterns of polychromy in the interior, it becomes possible to discover and make more visible the existing connections and dependencies between them, to determine the ultimate goal and basic principles of using color in the interior, to combine the means and patterns of color composition into a consistent system that clarifies the ways solving artistic problems in this area of creative search.

A responsible role in creating the aesthetic expressiveness of architectural structures belongs to monumental art, which, in synthesis with architecture, creates a single spatial material environment for a person (Isozaki, 1988). Full interaction with a person, the ability to perceive him as a part of an art object by others, a functional component, an addition to the surrounding space or an environmental dominant that creates a certain atmosphere, providing lighting at night – art objects integrated into the urban environment of the metropolis and made its space more meaningful, full and meaningful.

The structuring of social space requires taking into account the entire variety of ideological and spiritual relations between a person and the world around him. Therefore, the architectural environment acquires the figurative meaning of a transformed world worthy of remaining in time, and this is possible only according to the laws of art and by combining the philosophy of art.

The urban planning concept is built taking into account the rhythms of color dynamics. Color zoning of the architectural environment is designed on the basis of the master plan. Color compositional diversity, color memory of specific areas is of great importance for the information enrichment of the urban environment and improving the memorability of areas and socially significant urban objects.

One of the examples of color design related to visual means and influencing the quality of perception of the urban environment is supergraphics. The basis of supergraphics – active interaction with the shape – dynamically changes it. Proceeding from this, the space is organized in a new way, the geometry of the form is not visually destroyed, but a new one is created thanks to artistic means. super graphics. The visual transformation of a separate building is justified by the visual transformation of an object, not only larger, but also much more capacious in its artistic content – a complex of buildings, a fragment of a city (Tregub, 1988).

In visual communication, a lot depends primarily on sensory perception. Its details may differ from individual recipient, being imposed by personal associations and life experience, but each color and its shades have a common emotional coloring, and this is certainly taken into account in the design. Bright colors are perceived as “lively”, energetic, and pale and pastel — on the contrary; light colors are associated with lightness and freshness, and dark colors (black, for example) create a feeling of heaviness and intimacy of the object. It is generally accepted that red is a challenging color, the color of aggression, anxiety, and green is pacifying, neutral, and safe. “Natural” palette, i.e. the so-called natural colors are perceived as something natural and cozy. Colors can also be thought of as pairs of polar opposite definitions (Lancaste, 1996). As examples, the author of color theory Johannes Itten cited such pairs as “cold – warm”, “wet – dry”, “loud – quiet”, “transparent – opaque”, “liquid – thick”, etc. In addition, color affects a person not only psychologically, but also physically. So, warm colors, especially orange and its gradations stimulate appetite, increase the temperature. In contrast, shades of blue have a calming effect. All of the above are so-called “improper” color qualities.

The urban environment, in particular the space of a modern busy metropolis, is a complex organism filled with many small details. The use of associations and fantasy in work makes it unique, author's. It is necessary to identify the main thing in diversity of nature, to actively explore the world not only on the basis of intuition, but also relying on a deep study of nature and the assimilation of unshakable rules and laws of art, which were established by the great artists of antiquity (Lopasova, 2014). In this context, color cannot so much affect a person as it can fulfill an information-functional role. Road and street signs, vending machines and terminals, payphones, door and window openings, shop windows are highlighted in color; white stripes on the dirty gray asphalt mark pedestrian crossings. This also includes elements of outdoor advertising: billboards, signboards, posters, and posters. In other cases, attention is focused on an element with which it is possible or necessary to interact, for example, various buttons and levers. This role defines color as a means of orientation in space, creating a sense of psychological comfort (Auschner, 1990).

Historical and national factors take place in the color of this or that part of the city. Some European cities boast picturesque streets where contrasting or brightly painted facades of low-rise buildings are combined with terracotta tiled roofs. Such places are not only aesthetically beautiful, but also exist outside of time, keeping in themselves the spirit of an original national culture (Efimov, 1990). It is understood that harmoniously selected colors, or their combinations, are perceived by us favorably and aesthetically. It should be noted that the development and perfection of color depends and in direct proportion to the general cultural level of development of modern society.

The modern urban environment is heterogeneous and dynamic: the center, as a rule, is replete with historical buildings in the styles and colors of the “old” time, which, moving away from it towards the outskirts, are replaced by multi-colored rows of residential buildings with simple geometric facades. The transformation of color environment was also facilitated by the appearance on the streets and walls of buildings of a large number of advertising color carriers and lighting design objects (advertising stands, neon signs, and artificial lighting sources), the active use of glass and metal. And the once faceless buildings of “dormitory areas” are a thing of the past, they were replaced by new residential complexes, distinguished by bold color and compositional solutions, the so-called “supergraphics” have become a common means of decorating and visual enrichment of blank walls. Taking into account all this inconstancy and mixing of fundamentally different things, color becomes one of the main connecting elements of the generalized appearance of the city (Efimov, 1983).

Purpose of the Study

To consider and analyze the possibilities of new methods of finishing and processing, the article uses a variety of forms and materials, broad technical possibilities for the development of an image of a post-industrial city.

The color space of the city itself is very complex, it consists of many elements and spots, each of which has its own role and place. Symmetry and asymmetry, contrast and nuance, rhythmic construction, relationships between parts and the whole are the basis in the design of the architectural environment. The expressiveness and harmony of the architectural form and space also depend on the scale, i.e. their visually perceived proportionality, however, special attention is paid to the color.

Color as an integral element of the world has always been one of the most important levers of influence on a person and his environment due to its multitasking and multifunctionality; he was and remains a means of creating architectural expressiveness. Knowledge about the basic properties of color (color tone, saturation and lightness), understanding the features of the projected space, reliance on the psychological and optical influence of certain shades, playing on contrasts – all this allows you to draw up an overall harmonious picture of a particular area of ​​the city. Thus, the artificially created color becomes an instrument in the hands of a person.

Research Methods

The object of research is the modern organization of the design of the urban environment. The article carries out the analysis of methodical and special literature on the problem and uses general theoretical research methods.

The design methodology is based on a systematic approach, development of new methods, various theories, and recommendations for organizing the creative process. The article discusses a number of manuals with deep knowledge of the matter, many original methodological findings, interesting and thoughtful methodological techniques that reveal individual provisions. Designing monumental art and the coloristic organization of architectural elements of the urban environment include the formation of the color structure of industrial and residential buildings, squares, highways, etc.


Development of a post-industrial city, emergence of new methods of decoration and processing, a variety of forms and materials, wide technical possibilities are the reasons why it is possible to emphasize the integrity of an urban space in the present with the help of color and artificial textures, creating complex polychrome compositions from individual objects. Thus, a street or a square can turn into a single design and architectural ensemble with its functions and versatile impact on the entire surrounding world.


Color combinations in the design of an architectural environment are a means of spatial and psychological impact. With the help of a competent ratio of the main characteristics, you can visually distort the space, expanding or narrowing it, bring to the fore some of its components and move away others. The contrast of light and dark in the right proportions helps to emphasize the depth of the space, and accents with a pronounced horizontal or vertical direction can visually stretch both a single structure and an entire element of urban infrastructure.

Summing up, we can say that color influences the urban exterior and the person who perceives it as much as it obeys the environment itself. So, when developing the coloristic solution of a particular object of an urban environment, many factors are taken into account, such as:

  • interaction of color and shape of a particular object;
  • its functions;
  • size and scale ratio with surrounding objects;
  • type of urban environment;
  • features of the natural landscape and climatic conditions;
  • the quality of the materials used: texture, intensity of light reflection.

After analyzing all the information, one can draw conclusions about the color aesthetics of the urban environment. Color is a controversial phenomenon that affects everyone differently. Seeing a separate color or “symphony” of harmonious colors – the body, is overwhelmed with feelings that can be both positive and negative. The same color under different lighting conditions, under certain conditions and factors, will be different in everything: saturation, tonality, reflection, lightness, brightness, warmth, or coldness.


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17 May 2021

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Vasilenko, E. V., Vasilenko, P. G., Goltseva, O. S., Belyakova, T. E., & Shevalie, K. N. (2021). Modern Aspects Of Design Organization Of Urban Environment Visual Culture. In D. K. Bataev, S. A. Gapurov, A. D. Osmaev, V. K. Akaev, L. M. Idigova, M. R. Ovhadov, A. R. Salgiriev, & M. M. Betilmerzaeva (Eds.), Knowledge, Man and Civilization, vol 107. European Proceedings of Social and Behavioural Sciences (pp. 1695-1701). European Publisher.