Testing the relevance of parameterization to architectural epistemology

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Advances in building information modeling (BIM) deeply impact the production of new architecture; its benefits are obvious and its acceptance widespread. But how does BIM impact the study of existing architecture? Can BIM be assumed to operate as a neutral framework, equally applicable to the study of architecture anywhere? Using as a point of departure a recent oudine of the conceptual structure of parametric modeling prepared by Sacks, Eastman, and Lee (2004), this paper compares parametric models of two existing works of architecture: Mies van der Rohe's Crown Hall and Peter Zumthor's St. Benedict Chapel. The processes of parametrically modeling each building are specifically compared in two ways: first, parameters are established for each model; second, each model is "flexed" as a means of disclosing possible semantic relationships within each work of architecture. Because each building demands a different parameter-establishment strategy, and because the models permit different degrees of flexibility, the comparison illustrates the shortcomings of a "neutral framework" assumption to an architectural epistemology.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)135-141
Number of pages7
JournalArchitectural Science Review
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 2009
Externally publishedYes


  • Existing architecture
  • Parametric modeling
  • Representation


Dive into the research topics of 'Testing the relevance of parameterization to architectural epistemology'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this