Organic architecture refers to certain directions of architecture since the beginning of the twentieth century that achieve the harmony of building and landscape. So that the building can successfully integrate itself into the environment, the kind of the building materials and the conscious handling are most important. In this article you will find 5 examples of breathtaking buildings whose design and shapes perfectly imitate the beauty of nature. Let yourself be inspired!
The holiday home of the Kaufmann family, Pennsylvania
The term “organic architecture” was actually introduced by one of America’s most famous architects – Frank Lloyd Wright. He also designed the first such buildings. A classic example of this is “Fallingwater”, built in 1939 as a holiday home for the wealthy Pennsylvania merchant family. Today, the building has become a real landmark and masterpiece of modern architecture. But when the Kaufmann family saw the architect’s plans for the first time, they were rather disappointed – they expected great views of the river, but Wright had projected a house that was right on top of the waterfall. Finally, the family agreed to the idea and the built cottage pleased you very much. Today it can be said that the older the building gets, the more it unites with its natural environment.
The Kunsthaus in Graz – masterpiece of organic architecture
With a fancy appearance resembling a spaceship, the Kunsthaus in Graz, Austria is one of the best examples of organic architecture in the world. Because of its extravagant design, unusual shape, and the blue surface, made of special acrylic panels, the locals call the building “the friendly alien”. The building materials and fancy look of the Kunsthaus create a dramatic contrast with the Baroque-style buildings that are in the immediate vicinity. However, the appearance of this unusual building perfectly complements that of the so-called Iron House, built in 1847, which today is one of Graz’s most famous sights.
Examples of organic architecture – the Gherkin
Perhaps you are surprised – one of the most famous buildings in London – the Gherkin, also belongs to organic architecture. Although surrounded by many other outstanding buildings, the Gherkin stands out for its unusual shape, which resembles a small inlay cucumber – as the name suggests. But the unusual design also has another important function – to save energy. Between each floor there are special open waves, which ensure the good ventilation of the building. In summer, the waves carry out the warm air, while in winter they catch the passive solar radiation, which is used as heating. As a result, the light can penetrate deep into the building, which reduces the lighting costs. It is said that the Gherkin uses only half the energy that a tower of the same height would normally need. This original building is an excellent example not only of organic but also of environmentally friendly architecture, and this fact makes it unique.
The building of the Jérôme Seydoux-Pathé Foundation, Paris
Although special limitations have been introduced in Paris when it comes to the height of new buildings, there are many bold architectural projects in the capital of France that combine the characteristics of traditional and modern design – for example the glass pyramid of the famous Louvre Museum , Another such building, which impresses with its extravagant look, is that of the Jérôme Seydoux-Pathé Foundation, designed by the talented architect Renzo Piano. Although the entrance is decided in the classic style, the whole facade resembles a snail, which makes it so unusual and attractive. The building was built in 2014 and therefore it is one of the newest examples of organic architecture.
The swimming center in London
Another outstanding building is the London Swimming Center, built specifically for the 2012 Olympic Games by the famous architect Zaha Hadid. He describes the center as a “project inspired by the water, its movements and the many forms that it can take”. The building impresses with its extraordinary look, as well as the strong contrast between concrete and water, and is now considered one of London’s attractions.