Landscaping and Building
Architecture, Territory and Nature: Landscape Integrating or Building Landscapes? _ João Pedro T. A. Costa
Architecture projects gain a new dimension when they have to configure large landscapes. Both on rural or on urban areas, buildings and public spaces do not only (1) strongly reinforce its relation with the surroundings through nature; they also have to work; (2) the introduction of larger horizon perspectives; (3) the sensitive relation between the artificial construction and the land; (4) its situation among long structures of pathways, waterlines, etc., and; (5) the definition of site impacts, balancing between dissimulation approaches, promoting its integration on the landscape, or intentional design gestures, creating themselves new landscapes.
These five topics justify why this type of projects present own characteristics. The design of architecture pieces in relation with the landscape faces, therefore, specific challenges, which are illustrated and discussed along the seven following projects.
Stand on the Climate
Dwellings and Climate _ Aldo Vanini
The natural tendency toward homeostasis tends to convince humankind that every modification of the known state of things is to be regarded as a serious threat to its very existence. However, the entire course of history is a long series of continuous adaptations to environmental conditions, adaptations that have contributed to the human desire for knowledge and our technological capacity. Among these adaptations, those in dwellings and clothing mark significant turning points in the anthropological structure and system of social relations.
Common opinion notwithstanding, the artificial urban environment, in general terms, has been the primary human answer to the survival challenges posed by the natural environment and climate. In fact, only the great pace of metropolitan growth and increasing needs for mobility and production continue to make the urban environment relatively hostile. However, it is in places where Nature retains all of its original characteristics that humanity must continue to deal with its severity and rigor.
Far from the traditional geographical sites carefully selected by humanity for habitat-building, the examples proposed herein show the great extent to which critical situations can inspire solutions of extreme interest and architectural quality. Desert and mountain environments in particular represent stages for spectacular demonstrations of the human capability to challenge the most extreme climatic conditions.
Natural and Artificial – Dichotomy or Duality?
Natural and Artificial – Dichotomy or Duality? _ Paula Melâneo
If, as a depart, we think about Indian philosophy, we can accept the possibility that Natural and Artificial are one and same – as Humans are part of Nature and all human action can not go beyond the very laws of Nature.
Another way of considering the subject is by opposing the two conditions: Natural vs. Artificial. Following this line thought, we can define Architecture as an artificial activity – as it is a result of human’s intelligence and transformative action over Nature, being a capacity of reorganizing its structure onto a new logic.
But we can also analyze the architectonic production according to its approach, defining it as a Natural or an Artificial one – in its specific way of respecting certain rules; of following cultural heritages; of harmonizing with the surroundings; of opting on different processes; of using suitable technologies in the construction; of making an evident use of natural elements or artifices; etc.
In the following projects, we try to understand how architects manage the two conditions, Natural and Artificial, to achieve a whole harmonic result and how they create a functional architecture and construction, balancing between Nature and artifice.