What is organic architecture? The term «vitalist» architecture embraces a colourful variety of architectural approaches and expressions which developed in different places at the beginning of the 20th century. Pioneers such as Frank Lloyd Wright, Antonio Gaudí and Rudolf Steiner drew, each in their own way, inspiration from the principles of living nature. This often led to free and expressive forms, in an expressionist / organic approach. These where not meant as an imitation of nature, but to support people as living and creative beings. Within the organic movement, architecture is not only seen as an expression of culture and society, but also as something that influences the inner and outer lives of people. In this sense, the human being is seen as a physical, psychological and spiritual entity connected to its surroundings at all these levels. At a time in which architecture is largely dominated by economics, technical possibilities and regulations, organic architecture strives for an integral approach that also comprises ecological aspects, cultural meaning and spirituality.
Architectures vitalistes 1950-1980 was published in France, in 1986 by the Editions Parentheses, in French. His authors are two architects. Jean-Philippe Zipper and Frederic Bekas. The cover of the book shows in the first one photography in black and white of Sydney Jorn Utzon’s opera.
The book accounts 99 pages with bibliography, index and table and is abundantly illustrated. The iconography is mainly constituted by photos of buildings but we also find reproductions of works of art, sketches or photos of elements stemming from the nature, sketches of architecture, reproductions of plans and geometrical explanations. Nowadays, Architectures vitalistes 1950-1980 is considered as the key reference book on the organic / expressionist / vitalist architecture of this period. The book, present in all institutional Art Libraries, is a recommended basis for students in Arts schools and Universities and a recognised landmark for many design, art and architecture lovers.
CONTEMPORARY VITALIST ARCHITECTURE, dedicated to the period 1980 – 2010, will be a manifesto for building in a way that is both aesthetically pleasing and kinder to the environment. It will illuminate key themes of organic architects, their sources of inspiration, the roots and concepts behind the style, and the environmental challenges to be met. Today there is a response to a new age of information and ecology; architects are seeking to change the relationship between buildings and the natural environment. Organic architecture is rooted in a passion for life, nature, and natural forms, and is full of the vitality of the natural world with its biological forms and processes. Emphasizing beauty and harmony, its free-flowing curves and expressive forms are sympathetic to the human body, mind, and spirit. The fact that the rectilinear, orthogonal mode came to dominate the 20th century is a reflection of materialist values of an industrially driven age. The post-industrial age is awakening to a new world, which also echoes an older and wiser vision. The re-emergence of organic design, represents a new freedom of thought; an expression of hope for the future. This is affecting most fields of design from products and furniture, lighting and textile design to architecture, landscape architecture, and interior design. As this occurs, organic design is becoming less a fringe style than a mainstream design trend. Modern information technology and the rapid spread of computer-aided design (CAD) to all fields of architecture and design, has helped to free up design and designers’ creative processes. With the latest three-dimensional design software it is much easier to design and model sophisticated and complex shapes and forms. This modern technology provides the appropriate medium for a new fractal geometry framing a new organic / deconstructivist architecture In the foreword of CONTEMPORARY VITALIST ARCHITECTURE, the authors provide a clear assessment of new organic architecture and explain the reasons of its present world-wide development. Then, the book will introduce 45 fascinating buildings and projects from all around the world including such great names as Santiago Calatrava, Richard Rogers, Frank Gehry, Ricardo Porro, Bart Prince, Coop Himmelblau, Enrique Mirralles, Imre Makowecz, Friedensreich Hundertwasser, Toyo Ito, Zaha Hadid, Renzo Piano etc…
- The Wave
- The Earth
- The Mineral
- The Vegetal
- The Animal
- The Human