The potential presence of Zoltán Szentkirályi in space theory

  • Tamás Meggyesi Budapest University of Technology and Economics


According to the basic theorem of Prof. Zoltán Szentkirályi, the interpretation of the history of architecture should be extended to the history of organizing space. As linear space in architecture is the way subsequent space-elements develop for us in time, it may be related with the urban space composed of streets and squares. Figure-ground analysis proved to be a useful tool to describe the dichotomy of mass and space. The historical categories of Prof. Szentkirályi: the topological, the eschatological, the intellectual and the rational may be connected with the categories of Kevin Lynch: the city of faith (i.e. medieval cities), the city of the engine (i.e. the industrial city) and the polycentric city of our age. It may be related with the space-theoretical concepts of Christian Norberg-Schulz: the centre and the place, the direction and the way and the network city correspondingly. As a morphological analogy, we may speak about central, linear and even or dispersed distribution of buildings. Finally, the study introduces five qualitative categories to describe spiritual orientations of contemporary urban design: the chaotic, the organic, the rational, the emotional and the symbolic. The combination of these categories may provide a complex system of evaluation.
Keywords: architecture, urban design, history of architecture, space theory, planning theory
Published online
How to Cite
Meggyesi, T. (2013) “The potential presence of Zoltán Szentkirályi in space theory”, Periodica Polytechnica Architecture, 44(2), pp. 51-54.