Successor to Plain and Provisional investigating what sort of aesthetics might be appropriate and sustainable.

implicit order

Repetition, grouping, alternation etc of elements effects perceived order.

pattern                                                  palette






proximity effect

Proximity of units takes prevcedence over colour, type, sequence or shape

pattern                                              palette

random elements

A number of procedures can be used to generate random or seemingly random sequences of elements.

The first method is the continuing random selection from a fixed palette of elements.

pattern                                                  palette

Note red dot, yellow pentagon repeat and blue square repeat.

pattern                                    palette        modified    selected

The second method ensures that all elements are selected before an element can be selected again (12 tone method)

Elements are again selected randomly but once an element has been selected it is removed from the palette. Thus ensuring that each element is selected before any is selected twice.

Note the need to use all elements in the palette before the palette is refilled produces a secondary module, but very difficult to read.

dealing with randomly selected elements

Given that elements may be selected (more or less randomly) by owners etc how best to deal with this aesthetically?

use a reduced palette.

pattern                                                palette

Use a single material or colour (or a very limited set of materials or colours)

This requires the designer to have full control of the selection of the elements.

This may be true when the scheme is being built but over its life will become less and less so.

emphasize frame

pattern                                        palette

limited palette addition above still needs designer control

much weaker where the strong frame is itself coded.

Examples of emphasing the frame are:- the sonata form, bottle in rack designs, the unite d’abitation marseille etc


pattern                                                                  palette

emphasize ground

pattern                                                                     palette

limited palette elements above again need designer control

use camouflage

pattern                                                                     palette

limited palette elements need designer control

what works

About Graham Shawcross

Architect PhD student at Edinburgh University Interested in order, rhythm and pattern in Architectural Design
This entry was posted in Aesthetics, Housing and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Aesthetics

  1. hiit says:

    I like your fantastic web site. Just what I was searching for!
    Best regards


Leave a Reply to hiit Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s