Shelves: design This book was recommended to my by a former professor and friend, Dr. Ching is the perfect introduction to design. Ching walks the reader through elementary design concepts starting with points and lines, and ending with hierarchy and datum as methods of order. For someone with no prior knowledge This book was recommended to my by a former professor and friend, Dr. For someone with no prior knowledge of design, it was nice to have basic concepts explained so clearly. Ching also does well at building the vocabulary of the subject.
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ISBN pbk. Architecture--Composition, proportion, etc. Space Architecture I. C46 Form and space are the critical means of architecture that comprise a design vocabulary that is both elemental and timeless. The second edition continued to be a comprehensive primer on the ways form and space are interrelated and organized in the shaping of our environment, and was refined by editing the text and incorporating diagrams for greater clarity, adding selected examples of architectural works, expanding the sections on openings, stairways and scale, and finally, by including a glossary and an index to designers.
This third edition continues to illustrate the ways the fundamental elements and principals of architectural design manifest themselves over the course of human history but adds an electronic component to introduce the aspects of time and movement to the exposition of elements and principles. The historical models in this book span time and cross cultural boundaries.
While the juxtaposition of styles may appear to be abrupt at times, the diverse range of examples is deliberate. The collage is intended to persuade the reader to look for likenesses among seemingly unlike constructions and bring into sharper focus the critical distinctions that reflect the time and place of their making. Readers are encouraged to take note of additional examples encountered or recalled within the context of their individual experiences. As the design elements and principles become more familiar, new connections, relationships, and levels of meaning may be established.
The illustrated examples are neither exhaustive nor necessarily the prototypes for the concepts and principles discussed. Their selection merely serves to illuminate and clarify the formal and spatial ideas being explored. These seminal ideas transcend their historical context and encourage speculation: How might they be analyzed, perceived, and experienced?
How might they be transformed into coherent, useful, and meaningful structures of space and enclosure? How might they be reapplied to a range of architectural problems? This manner of presentation attempts to promote a more evocative understanding of the architecture one experiences, the architecture one encounters in literature, and the architecture one imagines while designing.
For the second edition, my appreciation goes to the many students and their teachers who have used this book over the years and offered suggestions for its improvement as a reference and tool for study and teaching. I want to especially thank the following educators for their careful critique of the first edition: L. Rudolph Barton, Laurence A. Clement, Jr. Steinfeld, Cheryl Wagner, James M. Wehler, and Robert L.
In preparing this third edition, I am thankful to Michele Chiuini, Ahmeen Farooq, and Dexter Hulse for their thoughtful reviews of the second edition. While I have attempted to incorporate much of their wise counsel, I remain solely responsible for any deficiencies remaining in the text. To Debra, Emily, and Andrew, whose love of life it is ultimately the role of architecture to house. These conditions may be purely functional in nature, or they may also reflect in varying degrees the social, political, and economic climate.
In any case, it is assumed that the existing set of conditions—the problem—is less than satisfactory and that a new set of conditions—a solution—would be desirable. The act of creating architecture, then, is a problem-solving or design process. The initial phase of any design process is the recognition of a problematic condition and the decision to find a solution to it.
Design is above all a willful act, a purposeful endeavor. A designer must first document the existing conditions of a problem, define its context, and collect relevant data to be assimilated and analyzed. This is the critical phase of the design process since the nature of a solution is inexorably related to how a problem is perceived, defined, and articulated.
The shaping of the question is part of the answer. This book focuses, therefore, on broadening and enriching a vocabulary of design through the study of its essential elements and principles and the exploration of a wide array of solutions to architectural problems developed over the course of human history.
As an art, architecture is more than satisfying the purely functional requirements of a building program. Fundamentally, the physical manifestations of architecture accommodate human activity. However, the arrangement and ordering of forms and spaces also determine how architecture might promote endeavors, elicit responses, and communicate meaning. So while this study focuses on formal and spatial ideas, it is not intended to diminish the importance of the social, political, or economic aspects of architecture.
Form and space are presented not as ends in themselves but as means to solve a problem in response to conditions of function, purpose, and context—that is, architecturally. The analogy may be made that one must know and understand the alphabet before words can be formed and a vocabulary developed; one must understand the rules of grammar and syntax before sentences can be constructed; one must understand the principles of composition before essays, novels, and the like can be written.
Once these elements are understood, one can write poignantly or with force, call for peace or incite to riot, comment on trivia or speak with insight and meaning. In a similar way, it might be appropriate to be able to recognize the basic elements of form and space and understand how they can be manipulated and organized in the development of a design concept, before addressing the more vital issue of meaning in architecture.
All of these constituents can be perceived and experienced. Some Architectural order is created when the organization of parts makes visible may be readily apparent while others are more obscure to our intellect and their relationships to each other and the structure as a whole.
When these senses. Some may convey images and meaning while others serve as singular nature of the whole, then a conceptual order exists—an order that qualifiers or modifiers of these messages. Villa Savoye, Poissy, east of Paris, —31, Le Corbusier This graphic analysis illustrates the way architecture embodies the harmonious integration of interacting and interrelated parts into a complex and unified whole.
Its inside order accommodates the multiple functions of a house, domestic scale, and partial mystery inherent in a sense of privacy. Its outside order expresses the unity of the idea of house at an easy scale appropriate to the green field it dominated and possibly to the city it will one day be part of. If the line shifts to form a plane, we obtain a two-dimensional element. In the movement from plane to spaces, the clash of planes gives rise to body three-dimensional.
A summary of the kinetic energies which move the point into a line, the line into a plane, and the plane into a spatial dimension. Each element is first considered as a conceptual element, then as a visual element in the vocabulary of architectural design.
While they do not actually exist, we nevertheless feel their presence. We can sense a point at the meeting of two lines, a line marking the contour of a plane, a plane enclosing a volume, and the volume of an object that occupies space. When made visible to the eye on paper or in three-dimensional space, these elements become form with characteristics of substance, shape, size, color, and texture. As we experience these forms in our environment, we should be able to perceive in their structure the existence of the primary elements of point, line, plane, and volume.
At the center of its environment, a point is stable and at rest, organizing surrounding elements about itself and dominating its field. When the point is moved off-center, however, its field becomes more aggressive and begins to compete for visual supremacy.
Visual tension is created between the point and its field. To visibly mark a position in space or on the ground plane, a point must be projected vertically into a linear form, as a column, obelisk, or tower. Any such columnar element is seen in plan as a point and therefore retains the visual characteristics of a point.
Other point-generated forms that share these same visual attributes are the: Piazza del Campidoglio, Rome, c. The equestrian statue of Marcus Aurelius marks the center of this urban space. Michel, France, 13th century and later. The pyramidal composition culminates in a spire that serves to establish this fortified monastery as a specific place in the landscape. Although the points give this line finite length, the line can also be considered a segment of an infinitely longer path.
Two points further suggest an axis perpendicular to the line they describe and about which they are symmetrical. Because this axis may be infinite in length, it can be at times more dominant than the described line. In both cases, however, the described line and the perpendicular axis are optically more dominant than the infinite number of lines that may pass through each of the individual points.
Extended vertically, the two points define both a plane of entry and an approach perpendicular to it. The Mall, Washington, D. Conceptually, a line has length, but no width or depth. Whereas a point is by nature static, a line, in describing the path of a point in motion, is capable of visually expressing direction, movement, and growth. A line is a critical element in the formation of any visual construction.
It is seen as a line simply because its length dominates its width. The character of a line, whether taut or limp, bold or tentative, graceful or ragged, is determined by our perception of its length—width ratio, its contour, and its degree of continuity.
Even the simple repetition of like or similar elements, if continuous enough, can be regarded as a line. This type of line has significant textural qualities. The orientation of a line affects its role in a visual construction. While a vertical line can express a state of equilibrium with the force of gravity, symbolize the human condition, or mark a position in space, a horizontal line can represent stability, the ground plane, the horizon, or a body at rest.
An oblique line is a deviation from the vertical or horizontal. It may be seen as a vertical line falling or a horizontal line rising. In either case, whether it is falling toward a point on the ground plane or rising to a place in the sky, it is dynamic and visually active in its unbalanced state. Place de la Concorde, Paris. The obelisk, which upright megalith, usually standing alone This cylindrical shaft commemorates marked the entrance to the Amon temple at Luxor, but sometimes aligned with others.
Louis Phillipe and installed in
Architecture: Form, Space, & Order
Francis D. K. Ching, Architecture Form, Space And Order 3rd Edition