Introducing Awestruck Biophilic Design - bringing the outdoors indoors through the exploration of wellbeing

Organic Design : Connecting with Nature & Biophilia

The Lindis hotel New Zealand Image Credit - LUCAS ALLEN

 

Sustainable Eco-Friendly Design

Sustainable eco-friendly architecture is a concept that began 20 years ago and as time has gone on sustainable eco design has become a more common feature within design. Organic architecture and design started as far back as the 30’s, where architects and designers started using the organic concept within their philosophy of design, way before the conversation of Biophilia and Biophilic design began. The development of organic design went on to lead the path for biophilic design in the future and profoundly influenced the design world.

Organic Architecture by Gerard Grandval
Organic Architecture by Gerard Grandval

Frank Lloyd Wright: Innovator of Biophilia

Frank Lloyd Wright (1867-1959) was an American architect and interior designer that devised the term organic architecture, whilst believing and following this concept. Lloyd Wright’s career lead to him designing over 1000 structures, 532 which were actually fully completed. He then went on to publish “The New Architecture: Principles”, which was an essay where he proposed nine principles of architecture reflecting his philosophy of organic architecture and design.

Fallingwater by Frank Lloyd Wright, Photograph by Andrew Pielage, courtesy of Western Pennsylvania Conservancy
Fallingwater by Frank Lloyd Wright, Photograph by Andrew Pielage, courtesy of Western Pennsylvania Conservancy

 

What is Organic Architecture & Design?

Organic architecture is harmonizing the man–made world with nature or as Louis Sullivan quotes ‘form follows function’.

In Joshua Tree, California - Photograph by Anthony Cotsifas. Produced by Michael Reynolds
In Joshua Tree, California - Photograph by Anthony Cotsifas. Produced by Michael Reynolds

 

A structure built using the principle of organic architecture needs to display the following features:

  • Creating things from the inside out, mirroring natures functions.
  • Closely emulates nature, blending in and utilizing its natural surroundings.
  • Using shapes and materials found from the natural world.

Designed by The White Room, Pali Hill Mumbai  POSTED BY: Kate Reggev
Designed by The White Room, Pali Hill Mumbai  POSTED BY: Kate Reggev
Cheetah Plains - Luxury Game Lodge by Architecture: ARRCC
Cheetah Plains - Luxury Game Lodge by Architecture: ARRCC
tranquil tone of this space at Gabriele Rossetti 19 was created through the use of natural shapes and elements, such as wood panels and the spiraling floor pattern. Photo: Delfino Sisto Legnani
'Tranquil tone of this space at Gabriele Rossetti 19 was created through the use of natural shapes and elements, such as wood panels and the spiraling floor pattern.' Photo: Delfino Sisto Legnani

 

Organic design encompasses the philosophy of organic architecture into smaller projects like art, home accessories and furniture.

Frank Lloyd Wright, Fallingwater (1935), Biophilic Building

The Fallingwater home that Frank Lloyd Wright built truly emulated the spirit of organic design. It was built in 1935 in Pennsylvania, where the structure was built partly over a waterfall on Bear Run and the waterflows beneath the house. This home was designed as a weekend home/nature retreat for the Kaufmann family. This home made great use of all the naturally sourced materials, such as beige concrete and cut stone.

Falling Water VII Art Print, by Chuck Kuhn
Falling Water VII Art Print, by Chuck Kuhn
Falling Water's Famous Corner Windows Photo by Greg Nutt
Falling Water's Famous Corner Windows Photo by Greg Nutt

 

Frank Lloyd Wright's Fallingwater in Pennsylvania, photo by by kristoffer smith
Frank Lloyd Wright's Fallingwater in Pennsylvania, photo by by Kristoffer Smith

Alvar Aalto Viipuri Library (1933), Biophilic Design

Throughout the library you can see the use of irregular forms, natural materials and skylights within the structure. All design by architect Alvar Aalto. Aalto’s approach to organic design within architecture, textiles, furniture, sculptures and glassware are what certified his success within the design industry. Where he was known for his modern architecture. Aalto reflects the wave like structure from the library in the vases he curated.

Viipuri Library by Alvar Aalto, photographs by  The Finnish Committee for the Restoration of Viipuri Library
Viipuri Library by Alvar Aalto, photographs by  The Finnish Committee for the Restoration of Viipuri Library 

 

Viipuri Library by Alvar Aalto, photographs by  The Finnish Committee for the Restoration of Viipuri Library
Viipuri Library by Alvar Aalto, photographs by  The Finnish Committee for the Restoration of Viipuri Library 

 

Alvar Aalot designed chairs for the Organic Design in Home Furnishings competition run by the Museum of Modern Art. The organic chair he made revolutionised the design of chairs forever. Previously up until then, comfortable chairs were normally built with heavy bolsters of upholstery padding and expensive springs.  Aalto built a lightweight chair moulded out of plywood which was seen as a big game changer within the design world.

 

Alvar Aalto Finnish, 1898–1976 Image credit MOMA
Alvar Aalto Finnish, 1898–1976 Image credit MOMA

As you can see organic design evolved from Frank Lloyd Wright, where it’s definition progressed and designers now continue to develop and strive for a more organic and sustainable design ethos.

National Museum of Qatar Gift Shop by Koichi Takada Architects
National Museum of Qatar Gift Shop by Koichi Takada Architects