Functionalism originated in Germany in the 20s of the last century in the bowels of the architecture school «Bauhaus» and is still connected with this name. In France the principles of functionality were created by Le Corbusier, whose name is primarily associated with functionalism. House, according to Le Corbusier, is a «machine for living in», person should feel himself there maximally comfortable.
Functionalism as a style was formed not immediately, but it largely determined the appearance of the urban architecture and interior of multifamily «beehives», where feasibility becomes the main goal. The basic principle of this style: purpose is above external appearance where a house – is not luxury but the most functional place for human life.
The main idea of this style is that «form is determined by function». This style of interior is on the border between minimalism and high-tech style. Luxury and aesthetics rarely accompany such style of interior as functionalism.
The main in functionalism is not the beauty of interior but its convenience to a person. It is designed for those who want comfortable living conditions in a relatively small space of one’s apartment.
This style is a versatile choice for those who are not interested in an elaborate décor, excess and ostensible luxury, but where moderation and convenience are felt in everything, starting from the plan where there is no need to pass long corridors, and ending with the lack of «unnecessary» decoration in an interior. Here standardization is opposed to individualism, and functionality eliminates sophistication of forms.
A layout embodied the idea of continuous space, where one room flows into another without passages, with a minimal amount of furnishings, and all small items are hidden in fitted wardrobes and racks.
Furniture in functionalism needs to be simple and multifunctional: chair bed, sofa bed, corner sofa, beds moving from cabinets or walls, folding table, table-book, drop table and so on. It may be made from simple and durable materials: wood, metal. As a rule such furniture has forms that repeat proportions of a human body, or this is just soft furniture, convenient in use, of simple geometric forms. Upholstery is also made from simple and durable materials.
Accessories are better not to use at all or use simple standard items: glass or plastic vases, or paintings with geometric patterns, also mirrors are widely used, creating perspective and expanding space.
All interior parts are functional, there is no place for ordinary decoration. Open spaces are zoned with mobile partitions, a layout is free. Widely used built-in niches, lights. Geometric pattern or smoothly coloured surfaces are peculiar, sometimes wall material is not hidden, concrete or brick are elements of design.
Functionalism – is the primary care for the basics of life – light, air, heat, communications, square meters of personal and living space, rational planning and compliance with hygienic norms. In a standard layout an interior fulfills secondary function, inner feeling and psychological atmosphere of home are slightly smoothed out. Abundance of light and air come to the fore – wide windows with minimum partitions, without bars and stained glass, which easily opened for ventilation. There is no place for complex and multi-layered curtains, graceful blinds are acceptable, although light tulle and blackout simple curtains will fit too.
In interior decoration are mostly used cold colours, preference is given to white colour, creating a feeling of spaciousness and saving the sunlight, usage of bright, for example red or green colour accents are possible.
You are welcome to read the full article on the personal website of the author – designer Tatiana Antonchenko: https://3dproject.by/a34079-stil-funktsionalizm-glazami.html
Specially for the International Association VATIKAM (Paris, France).