What is Organic Architecture?

Organic architecture has emerged as a trend in architecture and structural design. If you aren’t familiar with the term organic architecture, think of the famous architect Frank Lloyd Wright. He coined the term in the 1950s and has since influenced modern architecture with its unconventional design and architectural philosophy.

Underlying Philosophy

Wright got the idea behind organic architecture from his mentor, Louis Sullivan, who popularized the phrase “form follows function." But instead of going along with it, he asserted that “form IS function."

Following this logic, Wright believes that every structure should be able to mesh with its environment and grow along with it. Organic architects are very careful in surveying the piece of land because the structure has to look like it evolved from its surroundings, like a seed that has sprouted and grown. To keep with the natural feel, organic architects are cautious to make sure that the materials they use look the way they should look.

Famous Works

The most popular representation of organic architecture is the Fallingwater. It was built by Wright for the Kaufmanns in Pennsylvania. The reason for its fame is that residence is built over a water fall. The concept of the house’s design is that you can hear the sound of the water from the inside but to view it, you must go up into the balcony. The Fallingwater has received numerous awards from many reputable institutions, like the American Institute of Architects and the Smithsonian magazine. In 1966, the house became a National Historic Landmark.

Features of Organic Architecture

Organic architecture uses curves as a signature in much the same way that modern architecture uses straight lines. To differentiate organic architecture from the other branches of architecture that also plays on the interpretation of nature, David Pearson made a series of rules that were included in the Gaia charter.

According to Pearson, designs that are deemed organic must have been influenced by the natural surroundings in light of conserving the environment. Other than that, the organic designs must be able to stand alone and rely on its unique of form. Hence, organic designs have to look like they sprout from the very environment that these structures were built in. By looking in nature for inspiration, you are able to design a structure that can adapt well to its environment both in the future, as it does in the present. The very essence of organic architecture is to create a dwelling that isn’t just functional, but also a place of merriment for anyone who resides in it.

Homeowners’ Viewpoint

Homeowners with organic theme houses assert that living in an organic masterpiece gives them a benefit that people in conventional houses do not get. According to them, humans were supposed to live in communion with nature and not in boxes. Living in a structure that resembles one’s environment gives them the satisfaction of blending in with nature instead of standing out.