TAKING INSPIRATION FROM NATURE: RULES AND PROCEDURES FOR A GOOD BUILDING PRACTICE

Risultato della ricerca: Conference contribution

Abstract

Since the most ancient times, humans have always exploited natural growth and elements for their building purposes: nature, in general, inspired and taught a number of constructive rules that have been historically employed in construction.Some of the numerous arboreal species have represented a matter of fact for the primitive constructions and, later on, for the classical architectural styles. There are many examples of primitive shelters, or even real and proper constructions, made of natural elements and materials assembled in a specific way. Those primitive buildings used to recall nature in its flourishing development and accurate equilibrium. Classical architecture and decoration too, exploited for centuries till the modern and contemporary architecture, are evident examples on how the natural world inspired construction: from lotus or acanthus leaves for capitals or plinths, from trees’ trunks and branches for columns and epistyles, etc. Since the Roman times, and even with a major emphasis and attention in the modern age, trees’ laws of growth enraptured treatisers and philosophers as Giovanni Biagio Amico or John Ruskin, and architects as Jacques-François Blondel or Dominique Perrault in France, Giovan Battista Filippo Basile or Damiani Almeyda in Italy, or, to continue, Pierluigi Nervi, Frank Lloyd Wright and Santiago Calatrava, just to mention some of the most contemporary and prominent personalities. Even entire architectural styles were strongly influenced by natural world as the aforementioned classical architecture, as well as the gothics Portuguese Manueline or Sicilian Catalan styles, etc.Still nowadays plants surprise and fascinate experts and laymen for their stately, luxuriant and mighty structure that is often characterized by a complicated interlacement of roots, trunks, and branches that simulate arches, vaults or pillars and even a complete shelter or a reassuring protection in their thick and tangled reticulated work.Taking motion from natural plants’ growth, with a particular reference to the trees of Ficus magnolioides in Palermo that are regarded to be the largest and oldest in Europe of such a species, we will analyse and compare many structural, architectural and decorative principles and elements adopted in architecture and intended for a good constructive practice.Such a vast and fascinating repertory gives us the basis to a deeper understanding of the architectural design through the centuries, from the most primitive times to the closest contemporary age and, at the same time, gives us the possibility to take inspiration in a more conscious and reliable way during our constructive/architectural design process.
Lingua originaleEnglish
Titolo della pubblicazione ospiteARCHDESIGN'16 : III International Architectural Design Conference on Design and Nature
Pagine13-24
Numero di pagine12
Stato di pubblicazionePublished - 2016

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