253.E03 Formen des Wohnens
This course is in all assigned curricula part of the STEOP.
This course is in at least 1 assigned curriculum part of the STEOP.

2023W, VO, 4.0h, 4.0EC


  • Semester hours: 4.0
  • Credits: 4.0
  • Type: VO Lecture
  • Format: Presence

Learning outcomes

After successful completion of the course, students are able to articulate architectonic thoughts regarding the diverse questions related to the forms of inhabiting the planet. The lectures "Forms of Living/Figures of Thought" offer students the opportunity to deepen their knowledge regarding architectural types and their relation to life styles and ways of living. This lecture course avoid to make a separation line between praxis and theory: theoretical and practice-oriented subjects are  offered to students to develop instruments and to 'train the eye' in order to feed their reflection about architecture at large and housing in particular. These are lectures on types, space and forms and have at their core very large questions on design.

Subject of course


the intrinsic kinship that bounds architectonic types and ways of living


Dwelling presupposes a defined horizon: one does not inhabit the á-peiron. But the limits of dwelling are not rigid boundaries. They are the boundary that necessarily looks beyond itself at the very moment it is marked. Its very design makes a sign to 'what' that exceeds its content. The place of the home is also 'what' transgresses its boundary. The place of the house is also always about the Un-heim; the house looks ‘outside’. 

Massimo Cacciari, Labirinto Filosofico 


There are four ways to write a book. S/he who writes other people's things without adding anything, is a scribe (scriptor). S/he who writes other people's things by adding things not his own, is a compiler (compilator). S/he who writes other people's things as the main thing and adds his own things for clarification, is called a commentator (commentator). One who writes others' and his own things, but his own as main and adds others' things for confirmation, is an author (auctor).

Bonaventura Commentaria in Quatuor Libros Sententiarum



It seems that the first sedentary forms of life appeared in the Upper Palaeolithic around 15,000 BC, long before the discovery of agriculture: a long time since the majority of humanity decided to 'settle down' rather than live in the open countryside. From an architectural point of view, what has been there since then and what has not varied according to needs, fashions, styles or ideologies? What has survived epochs, beliefs, continents and climatic changes? What is it that has evolved in circles rather than in lines? Can we name those architectural invariants that inform architecture anyway, anywhere, anytime? Perhaps such invariants are what we call 'types'. If so, architecture - any architecture - can be seen as an ekphrastic poem that articulates forms of living as vivid dispositions of harlequinesque scenes (of life). Architecture thus fabricates habitats and suggests habits for people to inhabit the planet. In this way, types are first and foremost figures of thought through which architects participate - impersonally - in a discourse on architecture that has no owner but many authors. By articulating and drawing on types that are 'anyone's own', architecture - at all times - reinvents forms of living that are, by their very nature, always already contemporary. And yet, when we think of courtyards, platforms, roofs, corridors, niches, ... we face a certain dilemma: from the words we use to describe what constitutes a particular building type, to the formal qualities that seem to capture its main manifestations, to the spatial experience (lifestyle) that each type offers in a different way, the nature of types tends to remain mysteriously elusive and fantastically abstract: indexical and open-ended. However, if it is a fact that, over certain historical cycles, bonds are woven between certain types and functions (programmes), so that for a certain period of time some types are persistently assigned to certain activities, we should not forget that these bonds are mostly temporary. Functions change and disappear, while types remain and continue to offer themselves and their intrinsic spatiality. The relationship between types and uses is not fixed, but changes according to convergent or divergent processes. Types and functions are thus two clearly distinct categories that may sometimes, and for a limited period of time, coincide. In this way of thinking, types are what perpetuate the canon of an objective way of inhabiting the planet, which, instead of flirting with fashionable pseudo-artistic derivations of some of its interpreters, continues to tacitly invite architects to work copiously within a common reservoir of (life) styles and spatial experiences. Yet types also evolve, transform, and are even invented over time, and still there is something invariant about them and the way buildings articulate typicality without consuming it. Types seem to be that invariant 'something' that can only be 'named', but never properly spoken, and yet is capable of accommodating a multitude of exemplars.


Teaching methods

The course will develop through a series of lectures. The lectures will be held in English.

Mode of examination




Course dates

Mon12:00 - 14:0023.10.2023 - 22.01.2024HS 7 Schütte-Lihotzky - ARCH 253.E03: Formen des Wohnens
Formen des Wohnens - Single appointments
Mon23.10.202312:00 - 14:00HS 7 Schütte-Lihotzky - ARCH 253.E03: Formen des Wohnens
Mon30.10.202312:00 - 14:00HS 7 Schütte-Lihotzky - ARCH 253.E03: Formen des Wohnens
Mon06.11.202312:00 - 14:00HS 7 Schütte-Lihotzky - ARCH 253.E03: Formen des Wohnens
Mon13.11.202312:00 - 14:00HS 7 Schütte-Lihotzky - ARCH 253.E03: Formen des Wohnens
Mon20.11.202312:00 - 14:00HS 7 Schütte-Lihotzky - ARCH 253.E03: Formen des Wohnens
Mon27.11.202312:00 - 14:00HS 7 Schütte-Lihotzky - ARCH 253.E03: Formen des Wohnens
Mon04.12.202312:00 - 14:00HS 7 Schütte-Lihotzky - ARCH 253.E03: Formen des Wohnens
Mon11.12.202312:00 - 14:00HS 7 Schütte-Lihotzky - ARCH 253.E03: Formen des Wohnens
Mon18.12.202312:00 - 14:00HS 7 Schütte-Lihotzky - ARCH 253.E03: Formen des Wohnens
Mon08.01.202412:00 - 14:00HS 7 Schütte-Lihotzky - ARCH 253.E03: Formen des Wohnens
Mon15.01.202412:00 - 14:00HS 7 Schütte-Lihotzky - ARCH 253.E03: Formen des Wohnens
Mon22.01.202412:00 - 14:00HS 7 Schütte-Lihotzky - ARCH 253.E03: Formen des Wohnens

Examination modalities


Course registration

Begin End Deregistration end
06.10.2023 08:30 06.10.2023 08:31 06.10.2023 08:31


Study CodeObligationSemesterPrecon.Info
066 443 Architecture Not specified


No lecture notes are available.

Accompanying courses

Continuative courses