White Space as an Active Void

White space is that area that is left blank or, perhaps more accurately, open. It should not be thought of as unused space because it is actually an important part of the design itself. It is an “active” void. It adds to or enhances what the artist is trying to communicate. It clears away the clutter and allows the message to be heard.

Whether the subject is architecture, two-dimensional art, film, dance or theater, designing the empty space is as important as designing the content that surrounds it. But it’s not easy to allow emptiness. You have to defend it. And you must also convince yourself. It takes confidence to allow empty space in your work.

Of course, white space is not just about leaving blank spots. One has to establish content and structure in order to be successful in eliciting real participation. One has to be vigilant, constantly paying attention to the shape of the void. But that’s the obvious part. The difficult part is having the confidence to hold back.

White space is there to allow the content to breathe. It is also there to allow the audience to participate. Because the space is as important as the content, it must be a conscious and integral part of the design and of the life.

Summing-up: Creating white space requires balance. We need to be secure enough to create white space in our daily work and life; to create not emptiness, but an active void. A place where others can jump in and participate. It’s about making room for others to express themselves.

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