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  1. ArchDaily
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Biomimicry: The Latest Architecture and News

Monkey House / Atelier Marko Brajovic

© Rafael Medeiros
© Rafael Medeiros

© Gustavo Uemura© Gustavo Uemura© Rafael Medeiros© Rafael Medeiros+ 25

  • Area Area of this architecture project Area:  86
  • Year Completion year of this architecture project Year:  2020
  • Manufacturers Brands with products used in this architecture project
    Manufacturers: Docol, Mekal

Calatrava's UAE Pavilion Through the Lens of Stephane Aboudaram

A "symbolic interpretation of the flow of movement", Calatrava’s design for the UAE Pavilion at the 2020 Expo Dubai is a 15,000 square meters immersive and multisensory experience. Images recently shot by Stephane Aboudaram highlight a structure of 28 automated cantilevered wings, that open and rotate at a range of 110 and 125 degrees. Moreover, these photos also show a central skylight, that mimics the logo of this year’s expo.

© Stephane Aboudaram© Stephane Aboudaram© Stephane Aboudaram© Stephane Aboudaram+ 34

What is Biomimetic Architecture?

The Living, based in New York, in collaboration with Ecovative Design, a company that produces mycelium bricks to replace plastic, built a 13-meter high tower in the courtyard of MoMA. Image © Andrew NunesJean Nouvel and OXO Architects design mixed-use complex inspired by the shape of a mountain. Image via Compagnie de PhalsbourgFrank Lloyd Wright's Johnson Wax Headquarters features columns that expand as they rise, similar to water lilies floating on the water's surface. Image © Wikipedia. Licensed under Public DomainBeijing National Aquatics Center / PTW Arquitectos. Image © David Gray/Reuters /Landov+ 8

In 1941, Swiss engineer George de Mestral was coming back from a hunting trip with his dog when he noticed that some seeds kept sticking to his clothes and his dog's fur. He observed that they contained several "hooks" that caught on anything with a loop, and from studying this plant, seven years later, he invented the hook and loop fastener, which he named Velcro.

Rethinking Artificial Reef Structures through 3D Clay Printing

© Vriko Yu© Christian J. Lange© AFCD© AFCD+ 22

Corals are fundamental to marine life. Sometimes called tropical sea forests, they form some of the most diverse ecosystems on Earth. They serve as a refuge, breeding, and feeding area for dozens of species in the sea, and their absence can negatively affect local biodiversity to a tremendous degree. Yet just as humanity pollutes and destroys, it can also remedy and encourage the creation of more life. This is why shipwrecks of old vessels or the sinking of concrete structures for the creation of artificial reefs are frequently reported as providing immense potential. In Hong Kong, researchers have been developing 3D printed structures using organic materials that can lead to the creation of new opportunities under the sea.

How Will We Live Together With All Other Species?

Hashim Sarkis, the curator of the 17th International Architecture Exhibition organized by La Biennale di Venezia, launched a striking visionary theme at the beginning of this year: “How will we live together?”. This fundamental question finally transcends all disciplines and opens an existential portal for humanity. It does not refer only to humans but all species, the nonhuman organisms as well.

Biomimicry Institute Launches New Online Course for Designers

The Biomimicry Institute and Biomimicry South Africa have launched a new course covering the fundamentals of biomimicry. Called ‘Learn Biomimicry’, the online course kicks off in support of the Earth Day Network’s call for creative, innovative, and brave solutions needed to regenerate and repair the damage done to the planet.

© Hirouyki OkiCourtesy of Biomimicry Institute© Ferdinand LudwigCourtesy of Biomimicry Institute+ 7

Jean Nouvel + OXO Architectes design Mountainous Mixed-Use Campus in Antibes

Ateliers Jean Nouvel has collaborated with French practice OXO Architectes on a competition-winning design for a mountainous campus in the Sophia Antipolis technology park in Antibes, France. The “Ecotone Antibes” will serve as the main entrance to the technology park, which is home to over 2,000 companies.

Described as a 21st-century campus for France, the 40,000-square-meter mountainous structure is covered in lush vegetation, containing offices, a hotel, amenities, and co-working spaces. The campus, a rare exercise in biomimicry for the South of France, sought to capture the site’s rich landscaped surroundings, translating a natural ethos to the hard, technological campus.

via Compagnie de Phalsbourgvia Compagnie de Phalsbourgvia Compagnie de Phalsbourgvia Compagnie de Phalsbourg+ 12

Semaphore: an Ecological Utopia Proposed by Vincent Callebaut

In a design proposal for Soprema’s new company headquarters in Strasbourg, France, Vincent Callebaut Architectures envisions an 8,225 square-meter ecological utopia. The building, called Semaphore, is described in the program as a “green flex office for nomad co-workers” and is dedicated to urban agriculture and employee well-being.

An eco-futuristic building, Semaphore is inspired by biomimicry and intended as a poetic landmark, as well as aiming to serve as a showcase for Soprema’s entire range of insulation, waterproofing, and greening products. The design is an ecological prototype of the green city of the future, working to achieve a symbiosis between humans and nature.

Courtesy of Vincent Callebaut ArchitecturesCourtesy of Vincent Callebaut ArchitecturesCourtesy of Vincent Callebaut ArchitecturesCourtesy of Vincent Callebaut Architectures+ 23

Resilience and Adaptation

The Architectural Association Visiting School Amazon is organising for the fourth consecutive year a workshop in the Brazilian Amazon rainforest open to design and architecture students and professionals in which an experimental floating structure will be designed and constructed in collaboration with Atelier Marko Brajovic and Ecofloat.

Vincent Callebaut Architectures Wins Public Vote for Millennial Vertical Forest Competition

For the "Imagine Angers" international design competition, Vincent Callebaut Architectures worked in collaboration with Bouygues Immobilier group to submit a proposal for the French city at the intersection of social and technological innovation, with a focus on ecology and hospitality. Named Arboricole, meaning “tree” and “cultivation,” this live-work-play environment gives back as much to the environment as it does its users. Although WY-TO prevailed in the competition, the Callebaut scheme succeeded in winning the public vote.

Courtesy of Vincent Callebaut ArchitecturesCourtesy of Vincent Callebaut ArchitecturesCourtesy of Vincent Callebaut ArchitecturesCourtesy of Vincent Callebaut Architectures+ 26

Biomimicry with Steel Sheets: Designing "DNA" Into Materials Can Create Architecture that Shapes Itself

This article was originally published by Autodesk's Redshift publication as "Haresh Lalvani on Biomimicry and Architecture That Designs Itself."

It’s the holy grail for any biomimicry design futurist: buildings and structures that use generative geometry to assemble and repair themselves, grow, and evolve all on their own. Buildings that grow like trees, assembling their matter through something like genomic instructions encoded in the material itself.

To get there, architecture alone won’t cut it. And as such, one designer, Haresh Lalvani, is among the most successful at researching this fundamental revision of architecture and fabrication. (Or is it “creation and evolution”?) He employs a wildly interdisciplinary range of tools to further this inquiry: biology; mathematics; computer science; and, most notably, art.

Xurf Curved Space, 2008. Image Courtesy of Haresh LalvaniXurf Ripples, 2007. Image Courtesy of Haresh LalvaniThis self-shaping example from 2009—with its variable openings—has implications for building facades, ceilings, and wall systems. Image Courtesy of Haresh LalvaniA number code laser-cut into this GR FLORA series from 2012 established the self-shaping process. As Lalvani's team changed one number of the code, the perimeter edge increased in relation to the area of the surface, and it crumpled. Image Courtesy of Haresh Lalvani+ 11

Aedas Releases Plans for Blooming Bamboo-Inspired Tower in China

Aedas has released its design for Gmond International Building, a representative regeneration project located in the old town area of Shenzhen, China. The 200-meter super high-rise building is inspired by the traditional form of Chinese totem bamboo, which symbolizes prosperity and moral integrity.

With nearly 60,000 square meters of gross floor area, the building will house the headquarters for Tellus-Gmond, Grade 5A lettable office spaces, and a jewelry-trading center.

Courtesy of AedasCourtesy of AedasCourtesy of AedasCourtesy of Aedas+ 6

LAVA Unveils Transformation of Energy Storage Center into a City Icon in Germany

LAVA (Laboratory for Visionary Architecture) has won the competition to redesign an energy park and energy storage building in Heidelberg, Germany, for the Stadtwerke Heidelberg. Currently a cylindrically shaped storage center, the space will be transformed into a dynamic sculpture, city icon, and knowledge hub for sustainable energy, fully accessible to the public with city views.

In order to display the concepts of energy transition, decentralization, networking, flexibility and adaptability, the project will feature a multi-layered façade structure inspired by geometries in nature like leaves, spider webs, and reptile skins. “The result is a dynamic, ever-changing surface of light and shadow, animated by wind, turning the building into a beacon of a dynamic new energy regime.”

Courtesy of LAVACourtesy of LAVACourtesy of LAVACourtesy of LAVA+ 17

Insect-Wing-Inspired Design Wins Moscow Circus School Competition

The team of architects Maryam Fazel and Belinda Ercan, from Iran and Germany, respectively, have won first prize in the competition for the design of the Moscow Circus School launched by the Architectural Competition Concours d’Architecture (AC-CA).

The winning proposal, entitled Elytra, is an “eye-catching, cutting-edge, [and] unconventional” design that will tower over Moscow’s Tverskoy District, an area which features a burgeoning artistic scene.

Inspired by the forewings of insects—called elytra—the project opens upwards as a protective shell, and will feature both public and private space.

Courtesy of Maryam Fazel and Belinda ErcanCourtesy of Maryam Fazel and Belinda ErcanCourtesy of Maryam Fazel and Belinda ErcanCourtesy of Maryam Fazel and Belinda Ercan+ 12

Architects of Invention's Coral Holiday Apartments Design Utilizes Biomimicry to Resemble Coral in Seychelles

Architects of Invention has unveiled their design for the Coral Holiday Apartments, an upscale lifestyle community in Seychelles, an archipelago in the Indian Ocean off the coast of East Africa. Located on the reclaimed portion of the main island of Seychelles, the project will feature professionally serviced apartments, a spa, several restaurants, a clubhouse, a pool, private marina and direct access to the beach.

Let Your Building "Breathe" With This Pneumatic Façade Technology

Have you ever seen a building that breathes through thousands of pores? That may now be a possibility thanks to Tobias Becker’s Breathing Skins Project. Based on the concept of biomimicry, the technology is inspired by organic skins that adjust their permeability to control the necessary flow of light, matter and temperature between the inside and the outside. In addition to these performative benefits, the constantly changing appearance of these façades provides a rich interplay between the exterior natural environment and interior living spaces.

Courtesy of The Breathing Skins ProjectCourtesy of The Breathing Skins ProjectCourtesy of The Breathing Skins ProjectCourtesy of The Breathing Skins Project+ 8

Financial Times Article Details How Biomimicry Can be Applied to Architecture

In a recent article published by the Financial Times, architect and public speaker Michael Pawlyn delves into how biomimicry can be applied to architecture in order to solve design problems and create a more sustainable future. Even in very early examples, biomimicry has been critical in the development of architecture, for example when Filippo Brunelleschi studied eggshells to create a thinner and lighter dome for his cathedral in Florence. In a modern example, biomimicry has been utilized—through the examination of termite mounds—to create cool environments without air conditioning in warm climates such as in Zimbabwe.