Organic architecture is a philosophy of architecture which promotes synchronization between human environment and the innate world through design approaches so compassionate and well incorporated with its site those buildings, furnishings, and surroundings become part of a unified, interrelated composition. Architects Gustav Stickley, Antoni Gaudi, Louis Sullivan, Frank Lloyd Wright, John Lautner, Claude Bragdon, and most recently Anton Alberts, Nari Gandhi, John Preihs and Laurie Baker are all prominent for their work with organic architecture.
Organic architecture is also translated into the all inclusive nature of Frank Lloyd Wright’s design process. Materials, motifs, and basic ordering principals continue to repeat themselves throughout the building as a whole. The idea of organic architecture refers not only to the buildings’ literal relationship to the natural surroundings, but how the buildings’ design is carefully thought about as if it were a unified organism. Geometries throughout Wright’s buildings build a central mood and theme. Essentially organic architecture is also the literal design of every element of a building: From the windows, to the floors, to the individual chairs intended to fill the space. Everything relates to one another, reflecting the symbiotic ordering systems of nature. Organic Architecture is a term Frank Lloyd Wright used to describe his approach to architectural design. The philosophy grew from the ideas of Frank Lloyd Wright’s mentor, Louis Sullivan, who believed that “form follows function.” Wright argued that “form and function are one.”
Organic architecture strives to integrate space into a unified whole. Frank Lloyd Wright was not concerned with architectural style, because he believed that every building should grow naturally from its environment. In the later half of the twentieth century, Modernist architects took the concept of organic architecture to new heights. By using new forms of concrete and cantilever trusses, architects could create swooping arches without visible beams or pillars. Modern organic buildings are never linear or rigidly geometric. Instead, wavy lines and curved shapes suggest natural forms. While Organic Architecture does describe environmental concerns, it also embodies the human spirit, transcending the mere act of shelter into something which shapes and enhances our lives.
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