Theory / Conceptual Issues:
The relationship of form and function has been a central theme in
architecture since the enlightenment.
The core issue is whether a building's form should truthfully
express its function or should it be independent of its function. The outcome of this issue provides a
rational for architectural design.
17th century architect Claude Perrault was one of the first
architectural theorists to separate the issue in this thesis of positive
beauty and arbitrary beauty.
According to Perrault, positive beauty plays a normative role of
standardization and perfection in design that typically is expressed
through the classical rules and language of architecture. Arbitrary beauty on the other hand is
expressive of function and its particular circumstances and
requirements. Modernist architect Mies van der Rohe coined the phrase, "form follows
function," to justify his architecture but his work largely treated
function as a surreal entity that could be poured into almost any glass
and steel container that fit the program.
This project examines the
relationship of form and function in architectural design. It encourages the awareness of truth,
whatever position the designer takes, and promotes the arbitrary
aesthetic of “functional” beauty.