Importance Of Form In Architecture

Importance Of Form In Architecture


Updated on
In Architecture

“Architectural form is the point of contact between mass and space … Architectural forms, textures, materials, modulation of light and shade, color, all combine to inject a quality or spirit that articulates space. The quality of the architecture will be determined by the skill of the designer in using and relating these elements, both in the interior spaces and in the spaces around buildings”. - Edmund N. Bacon.The Design of Cities

Architectural forms

Image credit: Image credit: Famed Architects

Form in architecture not just plays a very crucial role but it is probably the most debated subject as well. It is not just simply the shape or configuration of a building but it comprises of lot many elements be it a point, line, plane or a volume. So it may be any text, textures, images that we use in our design. Any architecture without any form can never be imagined so the importance of forms are listed below:

Before you move ahead, we suggest you to read How do Architectural Forms affect Architectural Design?

Regular Forms

Regular forms are more often seen in buildings where one or more than one elements are repeated in the design in some fairly and orderly manner that gives a clear look to the design. Such designs merge with the existing skyline very easily without creating any rough effect on the surroundings and a very peaceful vision in the eyes of a viewer

Remember these designs are generally more stable and symmetrical in nature..!!

regular forms

Image credit: Ellicott Square Building

Irregular Forms

Almost all the parts/elements of irregular forms are dissimilar from one another in nature creating a chaotic look for the viewer. All the elements are placed in a puzzled manner creating a unique design that results out in a very challenging way to the other surrounding buildings. Many of the master architects like Zaha Hadid have 99% of their interest in this kind of form which let their output come out in a unique manner.

You will surely like reading 5 Most Popular Architects and their Styles

Irregular forms

Image credit: Isidor's Fugue

Regular or Irregular Mix Form

Be it a regular or irregular form, transformations (additive or subtractive) in the existing form make the design even more appealing and unique. This actually results in losing the initial form of the design and making a building look completely different from all the previous stages. This kind of transformation through a series of discrete manipulations creates an infinite number of permutations in terms of design options.

regular or irregular mix form

Manchester Civil Justice Centre

Image credit: Denton Corker Marshall

Forms Inspired By Nature

It is not always about just the regular or irregular forms, designers can find inspiration from anywhere especially the nature and this specific kind of inspiration is actually called the biomimetic architecture. The forms are inspired so much by nature that what seems so simple in nature can actually translate to better design solutions by a designer. These design solutions are generally more efficient, sustainable and healthy.

By the way, These types of forms are not actually about replicating the natural form, it is more about understanding the rules governing the form.

Also, take a read to Top 10 Natural Building Materials For Sustainable Architecture

Forms inspired by nature

Beijing National Stadium

Image credit: World Stadiums

Unusual Forms

There then comes a time when people started preferring some unusual forms so as to keep themselves a point away from those usual kinds of regular and irregular forms. These forms could be in the shape of a piano, a pineapple, an elephant or anything like that and let me tell you not to confuse these unusual forms with those above stated Biomimetic forms.

Unusual forms

The Piano House

Image Credit: Unusual Places

Different Forms In Interior

Forms aren't just important only in exteriors, it plays an equally important role in interiors as well to create a dramatic effect with their distinctive features in the ceiling, walls, arches, flooring, columns etc. Different forms in the interior create different kinds of mood be it mysterious, romantic, extravagant, bold, lavish etc. By putting a few key elements together, one can enjoy a unique form in its own way.

forms in interiors

Image credit: Wikimedia Commons

Geometry And Architectural Forms

Geometry and architectural forms are totally interlinked. There are a lot of forms that are totally derived by using various kinds of formulas like Golden section, Pythagoras, Alberti, Kepler, Modular etc that show the coherence of composition and geometry. The result of these formulas is generally seen as the ideal proportion and epitome of aesthetics and harmony.

Geometry and architectural forms

Image credit: Le Corbusier

So, these were the different kinds of forms that show their importance in their own ways. Next time while designing out any form, do remember all the different kinds of relationships to forms with architecture so as to get fruitful results..!!

Lastly, take a read to the Importance Of Glass In Architecture Design

and, 10 Unique Building Materials That are Perfect for Modern Homes


Tags architectural forms examplesUnderstanding Architectural Form

Article Category Architecture

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