The Loss of Sky-Blue: Changes in the Sky-Environment

Brit Kolditz


The main thesis to be explored is the undiscussed change in the sky-environment and the loss of sky-blue from our aesthetic reach. The concept of ‘living blue-beauty’ allows to introduce the dynamic sky-environment as a scientific subject and to use the findings to open an inter- and transdisciplinary dialogue on anthropogenic sensory pollution. The observation of increasing changes up to the possible absence of this beauty also enables to address aesthetic and atmospheric (in-)sensibility and (co-)affection for fundamental environmental changes. In the context of an unprecedented epoch of the Anthropocene, concepts such as ‘everyday’ and ‘familiarity’ are being challenged. Furthermore, the sky-environment becomes revealed as vulnerable in its natural variability. On top of that, its threatened beauty justifies the pursuit of preventing its loss for the future.


Aesthetics; Philosophy of the Body; Phenomenology; Sensory Pollution, Beauty

Full Text:

PDF (English)


Baroutaji, A. et al. (2019) ‘Comprehensive investigation on hydrogen and fuel cell technology in the aviation and aerospace sectors’, Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, 106, pp. 31–40.

Berleant, A (2012) ‘Environmental Sensibility’, in: Ambiances in Action: Proceedings of the 2nd International Congress on Ambiances. Montreal: International Ambiances Network, pp.53-56.

Berleant, A. (2015) ‘Aesthetic Sensibility’, Ambiances. Environnement sensible, architecture et espace urbain [Preprint]. Available at: (Accessed: 1 January 2024).

Brown, D.H. and Macpherson, F. (eds) (2021) The Routledge handbook of philosophy of colour. London New York: Routledge, Taylor & Francis Group.

Campbell, J. (2021) ‘Does that which makes the sensation of blue a mental fact escape us?’, in: Brown, D.H. and Macpherson, F. (eds) (2021) The Routledge handbook of philosophy of colour. London New York: Routledge, Taylor & Francis Group. pp. 408–420.

Deisseroth, K. (2021) Projections. A Story of Human Emotions. New York. Random House.

Dominoni, D. M. et al. (2020) ‘Why conservation biology can benefit from sensory ecology’, Nature Ecology & Evolution, 4, pp. 502–511.

Dryzek, J. S. (2016) ‘Institutions for the Anthropocene: Governance in a Changing Earth System,’ British Journal of Political Science. Cambridge University Press, 46(4), pp. 937–956. doi: 10.1017/S0007123414000453.

Goethe, J.W. (1810/1948) ‘Zur Farbenlehre’, in: Gedenkausgabe der Werke, Briefe und Gespräche. Band 16, Available at:,+Johann+Wolfgang/Naturwissenschaftliche+Schriften/Zur+Farbenlehre/Zur+Farbenlehre.+Didaktischer+Teil/6.+Abteilung.+Sinnlichsittliche+

Wirkung+der+Farbe/Blau (Accessed: 1 January 2024).

Gopnik, B. (2010) An out-of-this-world blue vision. Yves Klein captured the sublime by finding a color for longing. Washington, D.C. The Washington Post.

Gray, T.-L. (2012) ‘Beauty or Bane: Advancing an Aesthetic Appreciation of Wind Turbine Farms’, Contemporary Aesthetics (Journal Archive), 10(1). Available at: (Accessed: 1 January 2024).

Heidegger, M. (1926/2006) Sein und Zeit. Tübingen, Max Niemeyer Verlag.

Heidegger, M. (1987/2021) Zollikoner Seminare. Protokolle, Zwiegespräche, Briefe. Frankfurt am Main, Klostermann.

Jarman, D. (1994/2019) Chroma. London, Vintage Classics.

Kahn, P.H. (2002) ‘Children’s Affiliations with Nature: Structure, Development, and the Problem of Environmental Generational Amnesia’, in Kahn, P.H. and Kellert, S.R. (eds) Children and Nature. The MIT Press. pp. XX-ZZ, Available at: (Accessed: 1 January 2024).

Larsson, J. et al. (2019) ‘International and National Climate Policies for Aviation: A Review’, Climate Policy, 19(6), pp. 787–799.

Mandoki, K. (2015) The Indispensable Excess of the Aesthetic: Evolution of Sensibility in Nature. United States: Lexington Books/Fortress Academic.

Marfin-Martin, M. et al. (2015) ‘SDSF Spatial Dynamic Stimulation of Fascia for pain and balance recovery in Duchenne muscular dystrophy’, Journal of Bodywork and Movement Therapies, 9(4), pp. 666–667.

Mark, C. P. and Kamath, S. (2019) ‘Review of Active Space Debris Removal Methods’, Space Policy, 47, pp. 194–206.

Merleau-Ponty, M. (2012) Phenomenology of perception. London New York: Routledge.

Pauly, D. (1995) ‘Anecdotes and the shifting baseline syndrome of fisheries’, Trends in Ecology & Evolution, 10(10), p. 430. Available at: (Accessed: 1 January 2024).

Rockström, J. et al. (2009) ‘A safe operating space for humanity’, Nature, 461(7263), pp. 472–475.

Richardson, K. et al. (2023) ‘Earth beyond six of nine planetary boundaries’, Science Advances, 9(37), pp. 1–16. Available at: (Accessed: 1 January 2024).

Soga, M. and Gaston, K.J. (2018) ‘Shifting baseline syndrome: causes, consequences, and implications’, Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment, 16(4), pp. 222–230. Available at: (Accessed: 1 January 2024).

Saito, Y. (2011) ‘The Aesthetics of Emptiness: Sky Art’, Environment and Planning, Society & Space, 29(3), pp. 499–518.

Saito, Y. (2007) Everyday Aesthetics. Oxford: Oxford University Press. Sheets-Johnstone, M. (2016) Insides and Outsides. Interdisciplinary Perspectives on Animate Nature. UK, Imprint Academic.

Thibaud, J.-P. (2021) ‘The Atmospherization of Everyday Experience’, in: Loenhart, K.K. (ed.) Breathe. Investigations into Our Atmospherically Entangled Future. Basel: Birkhäuser, pp. 163–174.

Toadvine, T. (2010) ‘Ecological Aesthetics’, in: Sepp, R. and Embree, L. (eds) Handbook of Phenomenological Aesthetics (Contributions to Phenomenology 59). Springer Netherlands.

Varela, F., Thompson, E. and Rosch, E. (1991/2016) The Embodied Mind. MIT Press.

Winston, J. (2008) ‘An Option for Art but Not an Option for Life: Beauty as an Educational Imperative’, The Journal of Aesthetic Education, 42(3), pp. 71–87.

Zahavi, D. (2009) Husserls Phänomenologie. Tübingen: More Siebeck.

Wallace, A. (2007) Contemplative Science: where Buddhism and neuroscience converge. New York: Columbia University Press.

Whitmer, A.J. and Gotlib, I.H. (2013) ‘An attentional scope model of rumination.’, Psychological Bulletin, 139(5), pp. 1036–1061. Available at: (Accessed: 1 January 2024).


Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.



ESPES. The Slovak Journal of Aesthetics (ISSN 1339-1119) is published biannually by University of Presov, Slovakia and the Society for Aesthetics in Slovakia. Registration number of the journal in the Register of Periodical Publications of the Ministry of Culture of the Slovak Republic: EV173/23/EPP.

   This journal is open access and licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.