design language etc.

design practice and theory 







Shekinah or the present, tenth sign of the Sephiroth of the Cabbala



I am because I perceive


The environment as a Qualisign in Peirce

he complex and a little blurred image that we see here represents not only the tenth Sefiroth but also the first  signtype in Peirce, the qualisign. Let me start explain first the latter. 

The qualisign is to represent the area of pure sensation before there is consciousness of the sensation as such, explains Floyd Merrell (note 1). We note that there is something out there, animate or inanimate, in time-place, that we do perceive without knowing it exactly. It is the primordeal caotic mix, the indiluted whole, of our general Lebenswelt. We could call it also *environment* being the prime uncoordinated stuff for any further consideration, or the gradual giving of meaning in the semiotic process of design. (note 2) 

The world as a divine garden in Luria

As a Sehirot, this sign it is called Shekinah, the present, or Malkuth, the kingdom, which is also *the garden*, meaning the diffuse presence of the Divine, the overall evidence of its manifestation and *the secret of the possible* that receives the emanation from above and creates the manifold of life on earth. (note 3) Good and bad are inextricably intertwined in this garden and it is man's task to liberate the *divine spark* from its *material  prison*, in the words of the cabbalistc mystic Isaak Luria (1534-1572).(note 4) 
Light symbolism is fundamental in cabbalistic, as in many other, mystic religeous phylosophy: its irradiates from its heavenly zenith towards our lower, dark world and Rietveld's theosophy was not strange to it as we will see in the following pages.(note 5) 
 other pages in connection with the Cabbala: 
note 1 Floyd Merrell, Peirce, Signs, and Meaning, University of Toronto Press, Toronto, 1997 (1937), p.134
note 2 I have actually derived the image from a photo of the object of our analisis, the red and blue chair of Rietveld, enlarging and cleaning the pixels.
note 3 Daniel C.Matt, The essential Kabbalah: The heart of Jewish Mysticism, Harper, San Francisco, 1995,  (germ.trad.p.24)
note 4 idem, p.31
note 5 cfr. Gerschom Scholem, Zur Kabbala und ihrer Symbolik, Suhrkamp, Frankfurt, 1995 (1973), p.16

   andries van onck