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Emote: See. Connect. Feel.

Gabby Connelley, Natalie Haley & Stella Kaufman
United States

An essential solution to improve the quality of life is to reconnect architecture and interior design with emotions and feelings. In the development of the museum EMOTE, it was important to create spaces that pushed visitors to connect deeply with their emotions through the use of natural light, psychology of colour, materiality, and more. EMOTE is an immersive museum where visitors can connect with their own emotions through a series of sensorial exhibits connected to all five senses. Visitors travel down into the Earth as they explore the depths of deeper emotions while coming back up for lighter emotions. Upon consuming the holistic experience of the museum, visitors will be enlightened by the involvement of human emotion and gain a better understanding of themselves, as well as the psychology and complexity of human emotions.
Located on the coast of Big Sur, California, EMOTE is immersed in its landscape both physically and in intentionality. The exhibits of emotion complement the mountainous landscape and oceanside with transitions that flow and fluctuate above and beneath the ground. The “lighter” emotions of anticipation, surprise, joy, and trust sit on the ground level allowing the spaces to feel bright and lifted, just like the feelings they evoke. The ground level location of these exhibits provides the opportunity for various levels of natural light to enter these spaces; each space is designed to take advantage of how the natural light changes throughout the day and the surrounding views that positively influence these brighter emotions. This location also offers the ability to connect directly to an exterior courtyard at the Surprise Exhibit, where visitors can enjoy fresh air and re-connect with the natural environment. The “deeper” emotions of fear, anger, sadness, and disgust sit halfway beneath ground to feel more deeply connected with these more complex emotions; the below ground level location of these exhibits provides less light, and spaces are designed to be more intimate.
EMOTE is place of reflection where you can physically and mentally tap into your emotions with tactile, visual, and auditory experiences meant to engage all senses while maintaining a safe and inviting environment. After traveling above and below ground to experience each emotion in Plutchik’s Model of Emotions, as well as the transitions and connections between them, visitors can reflect on their experience in a large classroom space that offers sketch and journaling materials; the end of the journey also contains a café space where visitors can unwind and relax. The overall experience of EMOTE is intended to be meaningful and informative while giving the fantastic twist of being fun and inviting, allowing users to return to experience the spaces repeatedly and learn something new with every experience.

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