“Visual Thinking Via Shape Grammars” by Özkar and Kotsopoulos

  • ©Mine Özkar and Sotirios Kotsopoulos



Entry Number: 33


    Visual Thinking Via Shape Grammars



    No prerequisites other than enthusiasm for shapes and keen interest in looking and seeing.  

    The theory of shape grammars defines a formalism to address the ambiguity that quantitative and symbolic computations mostly help us rule out in creative processes. The theory was first launched by Stiny and Gips in 1972 and has evolved into a groundbreaking pragmatist philosophy of shape and design since. The course, composed of a 2 hour lecture and an optional one-day workshop for 10-12 participants, introduces the fundamentals of the theory and optionally a venue for attendees to put these to practice in a hands-on workshop. The lecture will focus on giving some basic knowledge of shapes, shape algebras, and shape rules in order to explain how shape grammars translate visual and spatial thinking into design computation. Multiple examples of generative designs produced using shape grammars will be presented. The workshop consists of one exercise where participants will explore spatial relations between a number of shapes, leading to the production of a series of designs to be built by hand, out of a prescribed material such as wooden blocks or paper. 


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