blelb - The Visual Perception Lab was founded in 1999 as a research project of four lecturers at the University for Applied Sciences of Northwestern Switzerland at Brugg-Windisch. During the nineties Peter Bosshard, Hans Knuchel, Jürg Nänni and Walter Schmidli were teachers at the Department of Architecture in the fields of Visual Design, Photography, Physics, Mathematics and Computer Science. Even before the foundation of blelb, we published and exhibited together in varying line-ups. As a team consisting of a visual designer, an artist, a physicist and an IT engineer, we were able to solve problems in overlapping subject areas; and, at first, presented the products of our research in our own localities, later exclusively on www.blelb.com.
The name blelb refers to the shimmering effect of mixing blue and yellow (Blau and Gelb in German) by observing the colours simultaneously each with a dedicated eye: It is a metaphor for our interdisciplinary approach. The blelb spots represent excerpts of our work; for example, scientific studies, commercial commissions, interactive experimental set ups and design experiments. Our products are publications on visual perception, a publishing house with books and brochures on the subject, presentation and exhibition objects, installations in public areas such as orientation systems or art in public spaces, conception and design of special visual contributions for web and print media, as well as special effects for the textile and marketing industries.
On the death of Jürg Nänni in January 2019 the 20th anniversary of blelb changed into a commemoration ceremony for our friend, colleague and important cofounder of blelb.
Upon the closure in 2001 of the architecture department at the university in Brugg-Windisch, our team,
as teachers, was torn apart. Accordingly, the blelb-spots on our website became all the more important
to us and allowed us to further pursue our educational approach. Many of the explanatory texts accompanying
the spots were composed by Jürg Nänni. From these and his public lectures, among others, arose in
2008 his main publication, «VISUAL PERCEPTION — An interactive journey of discovery through
our visual system.»
As we understand ourselves as generalists, Jürg Nänni to us was not just a physicist but also an artist, inventor, tenacious scientist and inspiring pedagogue.
blelb - The Visual Perception Lab will continue to be curated through this website and new blelb-spots may be coming soon.