Design Philosophy

Design Philosophy

Friday, March 4, 2011

Form & Space

Recently I visited the new Dali museum in St. Petersburg, Florida.  The building was absolutely amazing.  It is located on the water and designed by the architect Yann Weymouth.  I thought it would be a great opportunity to showcase this beautiful masterpiece with this week exercise in Form & Space. 

The Unity of Opposites is the symbiotic relationship of the forms of mass and space in architecture.  They can be examined and found to exist at several different scales, as shown below.

Space can be defined in a variety of ways.  Using horizontal elements, space can be shown by various planes.  The picture of the spiral staircase below defines space by using elevated planes, which establishes vertical surfaces along its edges that reinforce the visual separation between its field and the surrounding ground.

A similar experience can be found with vertical linear elements, which define the perpendicular edges of a volume of space.  Below shows an example of parallel planes that define a volume of space between them.
The qualities of a room are influenced by the location of openings or voids within the space. These qualities include the form, focus, and illumination of the space.  The window view below becomes the area's focus and orientation.
The last space defining element includes openings that can be within planes, at corners or between planes.  The biomorphic vertical opening below extends from the floor through the ceiling plane, which visually separates and articulates the edges of the adjacent wall planes.


  1. I love how you used the Dali museum throughout- the consistency makes the post so much better and the insight makes me want to go to the museum even more!

  2. I love that you laid out your 3 images next to each other making it easier visually throughout your blog. Love that you used the Dali museum as your blog. I want to go now that quarter is about to end!

  3. Unity of Opposites was amazing with the Dali Museum! I know the Museum was amazing - so exiting to see these vocab words in such amazing form.