Michael Dawes

Michael Dawes
UNSW Sydney | UNSW · Faculty of Built Environment

Doctor of Philosophy

About

27
Publications
36,876
Reads
How we measure 'reads'
A 'read' is counted each time someone views a publication summary (such as the title, abstract, and list of authors), clicks on a figure, or views or downloads the full-text. Learn more
147
Citations
Introduction
Dr Michael J. Dawes is a Post-Doctoral Research Fellow at UNSW, Sydney. He completed his PhD in architecture at the University of Newcastle after investigating design theory and mathematics in the work of Christopher Alexander. Michael was previously employed at the University of Newcastle as a tutor and researcher and co-authored the book 'The Mathematics of the Modernist Villa' (Birkhauser 2018) and a series of journal papers and chapters.

Publications

Publications (27)
Article
Purpose In the 1947 article, The Mathematics of the Ideal Villa , Colin Rowe famously compared the spatial and geometric properties of buildings by two architects: Palladio and Le Corbusier. Many of Rowe's observations in this article have since been extensively debated but not rigorously tested. This paper examines Rowe's proposition that Palladio...
Article
The famous modernist architect Richard Neutra argued that movement through, and understanding of a building could be choreographed by controlling the visual stimuli that is available to a person. These claims are tested by quantifying the lines of sight and intelligibility of five of Neutra's residential designs. A computational method, weighted ax...
Article
A Justified Plan Graph (JPG) method uses graph mathematics to measure the connectivity properties of an architectural plan, providing insights into how a building may have been used, or how it differs from other buildings. The standard JPG method has several practical limitations that are evident when it is used to study relatively simple planning,...
Article
Andrea Palladio's Renaissance villas are amongst the most famous and widely studied examples of domestic architecture ever produced. The majority of past research about Palladio's architecture employed historical, mathematical and computational methods to analyse their complex proportional systems and rules. In contrast, this paper examines three o...
Article
One of the most widely accepted theories about Frank Lloyd Wright’s domestic architecture is that he employed a recurring pattern of spatial and visual relations in his planning, to control the experience of movement through his houses. Known as the ‘Wright Space’, this theory has recently begun to be tested using computational and mathematical mea...
Chapter
This chapter provides an overview of Space Syntax theory and its associated analytical techniques, four of which are used in later chapters to examine various arguments about Modern architecture.
Chapter
Part II of this book examined a series of twenty Modernist villas using a range of mathematical techniques for testing well-known claims about form, function and intelligibility. The focus of Part III is on the analysis of various elements or features in the domestic architecture of Frank Lloyd Wright which have previously been linked to particular...
Chapter
The famous Modernist axiom, ‘form follows function’, suggests that the programmatic needs of a design, its function, should both precede and take precedence over decisions about its aesthetic expression or form.
Chapter
Chapter 8 describes a dominant theory about the spatio-visual characteristics of Frank Lloyd Wright’s domestic architecture and the way in which these features allegedly shape emotional responses.
Chapter
As the previous chapters reveal, a recurring argument offered by historians and critics is that Frank Lloyd Wright’s domestic designs employ a distinct combination of spatial and formal features to evoke a sense of emotional wellbeing in visitors.
Chapter
While Richard Neutra is conventionally celebrated as the archetypal Modernist architect, his designs were only superficially indebted to the tenets of European Functionalism and the aesthetic values of the International Style. He was instead profoundly influenced by scientific theories that sought to measure and predict the way the human body would...
Chapter
The idea of examining the spatial characteristics of Modernism for the purposes of investigating selected social, cognitive and experiential properties of architecture is not a new one. As Chap. 1 shows, multiple attempts have been made to draw attention away from debates about form, style and aesthetics in Modernism, and towards a discussion of sp...
Chapter
Isovist analysis offers a way of geometrically describing the spaces and forms of a building which can be seen from a particular position. As such, it combines a consideration of both fixed, building-related factors, such as space and form, and temporal, experiential ones, such as visibility and the impact of movement. Isovists are part of a larger...
Chapter
This chapter investigates three spatial properties in the domestic architecture of Mies van der Rohe. All three are associated with Mies’s rejection of the type of cellular, hierarchically-structured planning found in traditional and pre-Modern housing. In its stead, Mies proposed a ‘free’ or ‘open’ plan, with only a minimum of physical divisions,...
Chapter
The previous chapter described the origins of contemporary syntactical analysis and introduced the established techniques for investigating the properties of spaces, paths, points and vision. In each case, the theoretical or conceptual foundation of the techniques was introduced, along with a discussion of its application and any specific findings...
Article
In 1977 Christopher Alexander and his colleagues from the Centre for Environmental Structure published A Pattern Language, an innovative design guide aimed at restoring life and beauty to the built environment. Since then, A Pattern Language has become one of the most widely read architectural treatises ever published. However, despite its populari...
Article
Full-text available
A Pattern Language by Christopher Alexander is renowned for providing simple, conveniently formatted, humanist solutions to complex design problems ranging in scale from urban planning through to interior design. This text is also believed to be the most widely read architectural treatise ever published. Despite this, there is also little acknowled...
Article
Prospect-Refuge theory argues that human environmental preferences are attuned to seeking spaces that offer a balance of outlook and enclosure. The first and best-known architectural application of this theory was Hildebrand's proposition that the emotional power of Frank Lloyd Wright's architecture arises from a distinct pattern of spatial enclosu...
Article
Historians and critics argue that the innate appeal of Frank Lloyd Wright's architecture can be traced to the way in which it balances the properties of outlook, enclosure and mystery. Such properties, it has been theorised, are responsible for the positive emotional response felt by inhabitants of Wright's buildings. Hildebrand explains these psyc...
Article
Space Syntax researchers have demonstrated methods for mapping and analysing zones (rooms) and lines (paths) in plans. One Space Syntax technique that is rarely used is focussed on the mapping of points (intersections) in architectural plans, and is an inversion of a more common approach to the mapping of lines (paths) in plans. From a graph theory...

Network

Cited By

Projects

Project (1)
Project
The project investigates five key theories or arguments about the architecture of Frank Lloyd Wright, Richard Neutra, Mies van der Rohe and Le Corbusier. The research adopts computational and mathematical techniques which are appropriate for testing each argument. The specific factors which are analysed include social, cognitive and experiential properties of space and form.