Transformations in Design: Terry W. Knight

The study of style and stylistic change is undeniably complex and difficult. When grammars in logic and related areas manipulate symbols, shape grammars manipulate shapes. Rule deletion subtracts rules from a grammar ...(etc)

Transformation of grammars consist of three operations called rule deletion, rule addition, and rule change. A spatial relation is an arrangement of shapes.

The vocabulary of shapes and the spatial relation of the Santa Maria delle Carceri church. The shape rules and grammar are applied repetitively or recursively to the initial shape and to shapes produced from it to generate designs in a language

  • Similar to Processing (Java), when learning to create an Object and it's multiple variations.
  • Design as language with it's own syntax, grammar, and rules (geometric rules?)  
  • Historic applications are seen in Renaissance perspective paintings, architecture, and in print (graphic design grid layouts) 


Copyright Cambridge University Press 1994.