Colin Ellard is a psychologist researching neuroscience. His interests include how the organization and appearance of natural and built spaces affects movement, wayfinding, emotion, and physiology. He directs the Urban Realities Lab at the University of Waterloo.
In my scientific life, I study these kinds of relationships by presenting people with problems of space both in the real world and in simulated worlds generated using the tools of virtual reality. In my laboratory, I can place you inside anything from a beautiful Frank Lloyd Wright interior to a stark, industrial cityscape in order to measure your psychological reactions to place. Out on the streets, I collaborate with museums and galleries to lead psychogeographic walks where I measure your psychological responses to the built fabric of the city.
*Photographer: Mathieu Rivard