The definition of architecture, as a “super organism capable of processing disparate extrinsic matter,” is one that exists outside of the discipline proper. It is, however, a definition that accurately defines the role of the contemporary architect and subsequent architecture. Architecture, the super organism, is reminiscent of nature, proposing a possible collaboration compounding in biomimetic action.
Biomimetics is the process of studying nature’s problem solving strategies and thereby engineering sustainable solutions through emulation. Much more than an examination of nature, biomimetics is a philosophy, a process of thought that promotes sustainable and more environmentally appropriate systems and solutions. The Closed Loop System is an intrinsic concept of biomimetics. These systems, biological in nature, exhibit a spiral metabolism. They tend to be multi-goal oriented, capitalize on the efficiencies of interdependency and utilize the idea of continuous resource cycles. Human systems by contrast tend to be singular goal oriented, linear, and wasteful with open-ended resource-cycles. Biological systems are also accommodating of further system expansion and aggregation, as such, they are not only sustainable but also capable of being restorative. Architectural biomimetics consequently is an evolution of human systems amalgamated with biological systems, an evolution that guarantees a more symbiotic coalescence of the two: an effective architecture.
The vernacular, in the words of Bernard Rudofsky, “Architecture with architects,” has often been described as primitive, native, indigenous, anonymous architecture. Conversely, in the contemporary architectural reality, the vernacular, with its “peasant” worldview of limitedness, posses many valuable and applicable architectural paradigms. It is a catalyst, both a source code of valuable principles and techniques in passive, status quo environmental architecture, as well as a platform for the evolution of and towards an effective architecture.
Terra Archipelago Infrastructural Commune, the T.A.I.C project, is an investigation of the construction of an effective architecture. Armed with the vernacular and a biomimetic tool kit, it is an architectural response proposing to remedy the overarching hazard of desertification in the Northern Sahel Belt of Africa.
Regional Planning, Research & Design
Norther Nigeria & African Sahel
Thesis & Research
studiovol courtesy of Otto Ojo