| dear kids, point of rigeour, could we cite the research
| and researcher and not just the media story? this ain't
| a blogger list, of course.

also, i don't understand this (yes, it is well argued and structured, as
usual elsevier journal standards). thought the Semantic (form follows
function) principle was followed in each case (in all cases, for
example, you enter through the door and sit on a chair). the Semiotic
one (styles and types should represent the institution) seems to be
broken (but than, it remains broken at least since the enlightenment).
not sure if i am alone in spotting this, but if i am not, elsevier
editors better know of it.

so much for the superiority of scientific (or scientific sounding)
research. on the other hand, interdisciplinary research is bound to
create this type of an error -- when maintained at the cost of
architectural studies. a lot of architectural research (history,
conservation, 'sustainability'...) is suspect on these grounds. i think.
architects better start being Architects, and really, really avoid
trying to see their discipline through somebody elses' filters (science,
social sciences, literature, art).

the article is from here:

Nasar, J. L., Stamps, A. E., and Hanyu, K.2005. Form and function in public buildings, Journal of Environmental Psychology, 25,159-165

The American architect Louis Sullivan once proclaimed ‘‘Form followfunction.’’ We tested this maxim by obtaining random samples of foutypes of buildings, obtaining samples from three countries of respondents unacquainted with the buildings sampled, and asking the respondents to guess which function went with which building. If form follows function, it would enhance legibility, presumably improving way finding and the quality of experience. x2 analyses of the contingency tables indicated that form had a small effect on perceived function. Thus, for the building types sampled, form did not follow function.


Author: Jack L. Nasar

Research Interests : Physical planning, design review, performance of
neo-traditional neighborhoods, environmental perception, meaning and
aesthetics,environmental correlates of fear of crime, crime prevention
through environmental design, sense of community, program and building
programming and evaluation.



Architexturez. wrote:

| semiotic cake! buildings really do not look
| like what they are supposed to. form don't actually follow
| function so they call it semiotic confusion

American Architecture: Form Doesn't Follow Function
By Robert Roy Britt
LiveScience Managing Editor
posted: 29 November 2005
07:04 am ET        

When you can't tell City Hall from an art museum, perhaps architecture
isn't doing its job.

Indeed, one new study finds most people can't see the difference in many
U.S. buildings.

Residents in Tokyo, Montreal and Columbus, Ohio were shown pictures of
city halls, libraries, art museums, and live theaters in various cities
in the San Francisco region. They were asked to guess each building's
The new study involved 160 participants and 12 buildings. The
photographs were retouched to removed signs that would have given away
their purpose.

"Buildings convey meaning, whether they are meant to or not," Nasar
said. "So it makes sense that buildings be designed to indicate their
use. But our results suggest it doesn't often happen."


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