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MIM 4122 Shape Grammars


Guest Lectures

On 28th March 2018 we have a guest lecturer, Birgül Çolakoğlu, PhD from ITU. 

Necessary Files

Download course syllabus.

Download A1 student sheet. Due 28 Feb. 

Download A2 student sheet. Due 21 Mar.

Week 1 reading material: Stiny, G. "Introduction to Shape and Shape Grammars" due 21 Feb. 2018

Week 4 reading material: Knight, T. Shape, "Shape grammars in Education and Pratice: History and Prospects", due 14 Mar. 2018

Week 6 reading material: Çolakoğlu, B., "An Informal Shape Grammars for Interpolations of Traditional 

Bosnian Hayat Houses in a Contemporary Context", due 28 Mar. 2018

Colakoğlu, B., "Design by Grammar: Hybrid Applications of Grammar in Design Studio Projects", 

due 28 Mar. 2018

Objective  and Expectations


What is grammar? How it is used in design communication? This course investigated the use of shape grammars in design communication. Since shape grammars are wholly visual, rather than textual and numerical, they provide a good way of seeing things, analyzing and exploring design solutions.

The basics of shape grammars will be introduced through lectures and through in-class, by-hand exercises with simple, abstract shape grammars. A range of applications from stylistic analysis to creative design will be explored. Readings will supplement lectures.


The lectures will be in English.


The class meets once a week: On Wednesdays between 09:00-11:00.


Students are expected to attend % 80 of the lectures, participate in the discussions and do the classwork/homework. If you don’t attend the course 4 times (including sickness), you automatically fail. The grade for this course is divided in the following sections:


Attendance / Participation: 10%

Three studies: (A1-A2-A3) 25% each

Final project: (A4) 40%

Expected Works

A1- 2D shape hunt in campus (Duration: 1 week) Individual work

A2 – CubeMondrian (Duration:1 week) Individual work

           Analyzing rules in art in 2D and creating new 3D patterns

A3- 3D Fold (Duration: 3 weeks) Individual work

            Origami techniques on 3D form generation

A4- 3D Building (Duration: 6 weeks) Individual work


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