Ryan von Keyserling’s Dysfunctional Functionality

Ryan von Keyserling, B.Arch ’23

ARCH 202b: Architectural Design II

Gallery: The Materiality of Schools, Sites, and Sheds

Instructor: Farnoosh Rafaie

In my investigations of the Petal House, I examined Eric Owen Moss’s dysfunctional and erratic functionalism, particularly in instances of competing vertical circulation. In particular, I was drawn to the Petal House’s semi-functional “fire-escape” ladder as a center-piece of investigation. In my classroom, I decided to incorporate styles of erratic functionality through the bow truss and ladder forms to create overlapping forms of vertical circulation.

After these two projects, I concluded that learning spaces for young children could be invigorated by assigning alternative functionality to vertical circulation in order to create disparity between journey and destination.

To bring this idea into a fully realized schoolhouse, I optimized use of secondary “shortcut” routes of circulation (such as ladders) in tangent to primary pathways and corridors to occasionally introduce moments of hijacking. By doing this, emphasis is placed on journey instead of destination, making the school energetic and exciting in its navigation for students.


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