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Form and Function

I have developed my own theory on form and function:

The two are given different levels of precedence within different eras, depending on many outside influences, such as fashion and the economic state.

  • At the beginning of any object’s life, function is the primary objective.
  • When function is defined, it is the responsibility of the designer to experiment with the form of that object.
  • As the original form mutates, the consumer’s behaviour is altered to suit the new form.
  • This means that this form dictates the function, whereby the function then must be reassessed.
  • Function is redefined, completing the cycle and resulting in more form experimentation.

Something like this:


As the cycle spirals round and round, the artefact gradually moves further away from the original product, and this is the point at which new products are conceived.

It’s just a theory (no doubt the first of many). I welcome any criticisms or suggestions…


About Ben Lynam

Product Designer who likes to do things differently.


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