Form Follows Thought

No offense, Mies, but in my opinion 'Form Follows Function' doesn't tell the full story. It's a powerful phrase, and it summed up the intent of design in the machine age, but it implies linearity in the design process.  Mies' buildings are stunning works of art, and I would argue they were driven by more than function. After all, architecture is more interesting than pure engineering, in which form only follows function. I would argue that in architecture Form Follows Function and Function Follows Form, and it goes on and on like that in a somewhat circular fashion until the design problem is solved. Form and Function inform and reinforce each other. Although function certainly comes before form, recognizing the power of form and treating it as an equally important participant, and not merely as the result of function, can help to propel function itself to an entirely new level. That's how inventions come about, for example.

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post by Catarina Ferreira, AIA

Our Porter House project, a ground up new construction contemporary house in Washington DC's Cleveland Park neighborhood, is about to go into construction. The DC Historic Preservation Office approved the razing of the existing 1950's house and the proposed design to replace it last year, the raze and construction permits have been issued, and the deconstruction work has begun. The existing house is being stripped down piece by piece by the non-profit charity organization Second Chance,, and many of the materials are being recycled.

Existing house being deconstructed

Existing house being deconstructed

Stay tuned for more images as the work progresses. For more images of the proposed design go to