Importance of Rhythm in Architecture

Rhythm in architecture is defined as “A unifying movement characterised by a patterned repetition or alteration of formal elements or motifs in the same or a modified form.”

The Rhythm is a regular and repeated pattern. When you think rhythm, the music is probably the first thing that comes to mind. But how can we define the rhythm visually in design? As a design principle, we can define rhythm in architecture as a patterned repetition of elements in space. We place elements and experienced the intervals between them. When our eyes move from one element to the next and through this rhythm in space we can enjoy a sense of organised movement as a musical beat.

Also Read: Know the Importance of the Axis in Architecture!

Rhythm in architecture is characterised by the patterns, elements or motifs at irregular or regular intervals. The movement may be of our eyes as we follow elements in a composition or of our bodies as we move on through a sequence of spaces. The Rhythm is the organisation of the repetitive forms, elements and space in architecture.

In other words, Rhythm is established by using repeated forms. In architecture, repetition refers to a pattern in which the same size, shape or colour is used again throughout the design. As for example if the shape changes but the expression of the rhythm will remain same. Rhythm in Architecture can also be followed on facades of a building which can be regular, flowing or progressive.

Also Read: Importance of Symmetry in Architecture

The repetition in architecture, i.e. by using similar modules on façade of the building is very common and visually well defined in the figure given below.

Below image is of The Roman Colosseum, it is a great historic example for rhythm in architecture. In this building repeating arches shows the rhythm and repetition in architecture.

The rhythm of Walt Disney Concert Hall exudes a poetic movement frozen in time. As if it was shaped by the music that it houses! Frank Gehry typically starts from the inside, working his way outward – a counterintuitive approach that looks at a building’s purpose before its presentation!

Rhythm-Walt DisneyConcert Hall- Frank Gehry

Frank Gehry is an individual has explorations in light, sound, movement, and materials, as well as his innate ability to understand the psychology of human behaviour, set him apart in the fields of architecture and design.

The dynamics of architecture of Projectcore are not always well understood but the visual impact is inherent in every soaring façade and undulating surface.  When Gehry’s hands touch a project, it becomes imbued with palpable life.

Santiago Calatrava utilised knowledge of the human body which follows the rhythm in architecture  – vertically by twisting the floor plan at every 5th floor level of the Turning Torso of Malmo, Sweden.

Opera House, Sydney at Australia is also the example of the rhythm in architecture, in this building repetitive form is used to give a rhythm or repetition in architecture design.

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Importance of Hierarchy in Architecture
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