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The Bed Maker's Model: A Thematic Study of Louis I. Kahn?s 1961 Article ?Form and Design? in Terms of Plato?s Theory of Forms as Treated in The Republic

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In 1960 the theoretical concerns of American architect Louis I. Kahn began to focus on a concept he called ?form?, not meaning a building?s three dimensional shape, but the essence of its underlying type. In The Bed Maker's Model, Steven Fleming asks if Kahn's theory of "forms" is consistent with Plato?s theory of the same name. This leads to an examination of the hypothesis that Kahn?s interest in transcendent types is reflected in his development of what could be called Platonising architectural strategies. While Kahn and Plato are quite different figures, separated by time, profession and intentions, the study illuminates a new interpretation of Kahn's theory and work, identifying ideas of Kahn?s which resonate with notions stemming from the early moments of the Western philosophical tradition.

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