Beauty or the formal aesthetic component of any architectural work, artistic or non-artistic, invites a response which expresses itself in the judgment of taste. It is a free satisfaction where free is defined as free from sensuous or moral concern, but beauty does awaken an intense aesthetic interest over the contemplation of the beautiful. Aesthetic form may be taken to mean the way in which the parts of the design go together. Balance, rhythm, harmony, line, contour, unity in variety, consonance, inversion, variation, complexity, contradiction, perspective, these constitute the very essence of architecture.
Aesthetic understanding is a form of practical reason and involves education rather than learning. In aesthetic education one acquires the capacity to notice things. It is through such education that the architect acquires the sense of what it would be like to live and work in his completed building. What the architect discovers in his designs are admirable qualities which in the last analysis are projections of his own inner self. After he has erected the building, all he can do is to sit back and wait until the artistic geniuses in the beholders create out of his design the masterpieces which in his innocence he probably assumed he himself had contrived.