Structure and Form: Proposals for Developments in the Design Curriculum

By M. A. Hann and B. G. Thomas.

Published by The Design Collection

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

This paper identifies subject matter of value to the development of the design curriculum. Attention is focused on a range of topics associated with structure and form in design. The nature of regularly repeating patterns (designs which exhibit repetition of a motif or motifs at regular intervals across the plane) is explained in terms of geometric symmetry. The term tiling is introduced to refer to a restrictive category of patterns that tessellate (or cover) the plane without gap or overlap. Various regular polygons that are capable of covering the plane without gap or overlap are identified. Periodic (or repeating) and aperiodic (or non-repeating) tessellations are considered. Inter-related concepts, associated with the Fibonacci series and the golden section, are introduced. The nature of the five regular polyhedra (or Platonic solids) and the thirteen semi-regular polyhedra (or Archimedean solids) is explained. Reference is made to principles associated with modularity, based on the well-known maxim: minimum inventory maximum diversity. The nature of fractals and scale symmetry is outlined. Sample exercises are included in the Appendix. Appropriate literature, which may provide useful to teachers and instructors involved in developing curriculum material, is identified throughout.

Keywords: Design Theory, Design Geometry, Problem-Solving Tools

Design Principles and Practices: An International Journal, Volume 2, Issue 1, pp.7-20. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 2.151MB).

M. A. Hann

Chair of Design Theory, School of Design, University of Leeds, UK

B. G. Thomas

Teaching Fellow in Design Theory, School of Design, University of Leeds, UK


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