Typological Thinking in Architecture

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The vernacular tradition in nearly all regions and cultures presents a strong geometric cohesiveness between internal space and external form. The visual vocabulary which links space and form can be surveyed and then graphically coded. The typological geometry which makes up this vocabulary is a key to the vernacular language or “dialect’ of any particular region or place. Such a language has deep roots. . . .

For the contemporary designer, surveying, coding and applying the regional vocabulary as described above might be referred to as “typological thinking.”

Haase, Ronald W. Classic Cracker: Florida’s Wood-Frame Vernacular Architecture

Since Ronald Haase wrote these words in 1992, many architects have applied a regional vernacular vocabulary and produced exemplary designs. The following are a few examples . . .

 Design based on dogtrot house type: Zachary House, North Carolina, Stephen Atkinson, Architect  (Source: http://www.nytimes.com/2012/10/04/greathomesanddestinations/one-shed-fits-all-a-modernist-dogtrot-reborn.html?_r=0)


Design based on dogtrot house type: Zachary House, North Carolina, Stephen Atkinson, Architect
(Source: http://www.nytimes.com/2012/10/04/greathomesanddestinations/one-shed-fits-all-a-modernist-dogtrot-reborn.html?_r=0)

 

 Design based on dogtrot house: Poplarville, MS,  Waggonner & Ball Architects. (Source: http://housevariety.blogspot.com/2010/10/dogtrot-house-by-waggonner-ball.html#.Unu1bCLnbIU)


Design based on dogtrot house: Poplarville, MS,
Waggonner & Ball Architects.
(Source: http://housevariety.blogspot.com/2010/10/dogtrot-house-by-waggonner-ball.html#.Unu1bCLnbIU)

 

 Design based on shotgun house type: New Orleans, Frank Gehry, Architect  (Source: http://www.treehugger.com/sustainable-product-design/gehry-designs-shotgun-house-for-new-orleans.html)


Design based on shotgun house type: New Orleans, Frank Gehry, Architect
(Source: http://www.treehugger.com/sustainable-product-design/gehry-designs-shotgun-house-for-new-orleans.html)

 

 Design based on dogtrot house: Lake Flato Architects.  (Source: http://offcite.org/2011/11/08/can-lake-flato-architects-deliver-on-the-prefabricated-house)


Design based on dogtrot house: Lake Flato Architects.
(Source: http://offcite.org/2011/11/08/can-lake-flato-architects-deliver-on-the-prefabricated-house)

 

 Design based on shotgun and dogtrot house types: Shot-Trot, Houston, Brett Zamo, Architect.  (Source: http://www.dwell.com/green/article/lowest-utility-bill-block)


Design based on shotgun and dogtrot house types: Shot-Trot, Houston, Brett Zamo, Architect.
(Source: http://www.dwell.com/green/article/lowest-utility-bill-block)

 

Sources Cited:

Haase, Ronald W. Classic Cracker: Florida’s Wood-Frame Vernacular Architecture. Sarasota, Florida: The Pineapple Press, 1992.

 

© Donald E. Armstrong and Material Practices, 2013

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