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Protocell Architecture

Protocell Architecture

Neill Spiller (Guest Editor), Rachel Armstrong (Guest Editor)

ISBN: 978-0-470-74828-2

Apr 2011

136 pages

Select type: Paperback

In Stock



Throughout the ages architects have attempted to capture the essence of living systems as design inspiration. However, practitioners of the built environment have had to deal with a fundamental split between the artificial urban landscape and nature owing to a technological 'gap' that means architects have been unable to make effective use of biological systems in urban environments. Protocell Architecture is an edition of AD that shows for the first time that contemporary architects can create and construct architectures that are bottom up, synthetically biological, green and have no recourse to shallow bio-mimicry. In the next few decades, synthetic biology is set to have as much, if not more, impact on architecture as cyberspace and the digital. The key to these amazing architectural innovations is the Protocell.
EDITORIAL (Helen Castle).

ABOUT THE GUEST-EDITORS (Neil Spiller and Rachel Armstrong).


Visual highlights of the issue.


It's a Brand New Morning (Neil Spiller and Rachel Armstrong).

Structure and the Synthesis of Life (Martin Hanczyc).

Defining New Architectural Design Principles with 'Living' Inorganic Materials (Leroy Cronin).

Cronin pioneers a fundamentally new approach to materials, scaling up from the nanoscale.

Dream a Little Dream (Mark Morris).

An Architectural Chemistry (Omar Khan).

Protocells: The Universal Solvent (Neil Spiller).

How Protocells Can Make 'Stuff' Much More Interesting (Rachel Armstrong).

Soil and Protoplasm: The Hylozoic Ground project (Philip Beesley and Rachel Armstrong).

Authorship at Risk: The Role of the Architect (Dan Slavinsky).

Proto-Design: Architecture's Primordial Soup and the Quest for Units of Synthetic Life (Neri Oxman).

Oxman explores how material properties are a potent intermediary for the built environment.

Back to the Future (Paul Preissner).

Line Array: Protocells as Dynamic Structure IwamotoScott Architecture (Lisa Iwamoto)

AVATAR and the Politics of Protocell Architecture (Nic Clear).


Bettering Biology? (Bill Watts).