A common view in design scholarship is that the form or shape of a building is a reflection of the exigencies of its site, function and materiality. Thus, the façade of a house is shaped by its orientation or siting, the approach to the entry and the number and type of openings in the façade (being a reflection of the functional zones of the interior). Regardless of whether individual architects agree with this proposition or not, the relationship between form, function and site, remains a touchstone in architectural pedagogy and critique. However, despite a large number of qualitative examples in support of this proposition being available, there has never been a quantitative approach to measuring this relationship. In response to this situation, this paper proposes the adaptation of one of the few, well-supported approaches for the mathematical analysis of the visual properties of an architectural design; computational fractal analysis. Using ten Modernist houses as a case study set, the data produced by the computational analysis of these works is coded into three categories, orientation, approach and permeability. In this way it is possible to seek evidence of any correlation between the formal complexity of a façade and the impact of siting, access and program on that building. The purpose of this analysis is not to assess the performance of these architects’ works, instead it is to propose one approach to testing the relationship between form and orientation, address and permeability.
|Keywords:||Computational Fractal Analysis, design assessment, domestic architecture|
Dean, School of Architecture and Built Environment, The University of Newcastle, Callaghan, NSW, Australia
Research Assistant, School of Architecture and Built Environment, The University of Newcastle, Callaghan, NSW, Australia
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