Article in Color Research and Application

I am very chuffed to report that the journal Color Research and Application has published my article ‘Environmental color interventions on a macro scale: Tactical urbanism and issues of global concern‘. This is the 7th article that I’ve published in the journal and it appears in a special issue on Environmental Color Design.

The issue on Environmental Color Design features eighteen articles, all of which are fascinating and at the forefront of environmental color design research. There are a couple of papers by colleagues in the AIC ECD group that I have known for many years including:

Ellen Divers – ‘Theory to practice: Pleasure-Arousal-Dominance (PAD) theory for architectural color design’

Doreen Balabanoff – ‘Color, light, and birth space design: An integrative review’

Fiona McLachlan – ‘Lustrous wrappings: Complex color and collaborative practices in contemporary ceramic facade’ co-authored with Mengmeng Lyu and Xuechang Leng.

Saara Pyykkö – ‘Conceptualizing the chromatic experience of environment: Two case studies using the Color Walk method’

Ralf Weber – ‘Monochromatic design in a polychrome world. Why our cities have become increasingly gray: A dischotomy between production and reception in architectural design’

Juan Serra, Ignacio Cabodevilla-Artieda, Ana Torres-Barchino & Jorge Llopis – ‘Color induction in the restoration of architecture in historic city centers’

Beichen Yu – ‘Understanding new colors in urban environments: Deciphering colors as semiotic resources’

I am also chuffed that the cover of the issue features an image from Jean-Philippe Lenclos, whose work in envirornmental color mapping inspired by PhD research. Plus, I had the pleasure of being an examiner for Beichen Yu’s PhD dissertation.

Here’s a link to the published paper.

Color is a common design element in the built environment and is considered to have the capacity to elicit human response. In respect to environmental color interventions, outcomes tend to occur on a localized, micro scale and relate to improving visual amenity, enhancing engagement and activation, and supporting initiatives relating to environmental visual literacy, wayfinding, orientation, and cultural diversity.

Recently, a new type of color intervention has emerged. Relating to geopolitical issues of global concern, these occur on a “pop-up” basis, carry a sense of immediacy, and relate to specific issues on a broader, crosscultural, macro scale. Falling under the category of tactical urbanism and representing a new form of environmental color intervention, this article identifies and documents two such interventions, both of which feature color as an integral element. In doing so, a secondary aim was to discuss the likely intended outcomes of these interventions.

Adopting a case study methodology in tandem with a grounded theory qualitative approach, this investigation represents insight into this new form of environmental color intervention. Outcomes indicate that these interventions focus on communicating information aimed at initiating change on a global, macro scale. Future research will indicate the extent to which these aims are met.


  1. Valerie Bostory
    August 25, 2023 / 7:24 pm

    I’m an Art Therapist currently completing my PhD in Expressive Therapies. I would love to read your dissertation and any additional research.
    Can you help me access those ?
    Thank you,
    [email protected]