Vernacular architecture of Taos Pueblo, New Mexico

Vernacular architecture of Taos Pueblo, New Mexico


Desert vernacular architecture – “the word refers to the type of architecture that is indigenous to a specific time or place and is not copied / imported from anywhere else.” (click to enlarge)

Desert vernacular architecture – “the word refers to the type of architecture that is indigenous to a specific time or place and is not copied / imported from anywhere else.” (click to enlarge)


French vernacular architecture

French vernacular architecture


Iron Age roundhouse

Iron Age roundhouse


“Vernacular architecture is a term used to categorize methods of construction which use locally available resources and traditions to address local needs and circumstances. Vernacular architecture tends to evolve over time to reflect the environmental, cultural and historical context in which it exists. It has often been dismissed as crude and unrefined, but also has proponents who highlight its importance in current design.

It can be contrasted against polite architecture which is characterised by stylistic elements of design intentionally incorporated for aesthetic purposes which go beyond a building’s functional requirements.

The building knowledge in vernacular architecture is often transported by local traditions and is thus based largely – but not only – upon knowledge achieved by trial and error and handed down through the generations, in contrast to the geometrical and physical calculations that underlie architecture planned by architects. This of course does not prevent architects from using vernacular architecture in their designs or from being firmly based in the vernacular architecture of their regions.”

Green Home Building.com: “There are many wonderful building styles from all over the world that can inform us with their shapes, materials, arrangements, decorations, concepts for heating and cooling, etc. Vernacular architecture has been loosing ground over the last couple of centuries, as modern methods prevail. This is unfortunate since many of the old ways employ natural materials and simple concepts that are energy efficient. Also the buildings themselves are often beautiful. Perhaps you will find some ideas from among these pages to help with your own designs.”

Source: Wiki
Source: Green Home Building.com (lots of interesting books)
Image source: The Natural Vernacular
Image source: asdesigned blog
Image source: Green Home Building.com
Image source: Geograph

Comment: What type of architecture is most enduring, vernacular or non-vernacular buildings designed by architects?


Comments

Vernacular Architecture — 3 Comments

  1. Architect-designed structures and vernacular buildings each have their own merits. An architect’s buildings will (hopefully) be better built, cost more, last longer and perhaps be hailed in a local magazine. Vernacular buildings on the other hand are easily and inexpensively built, are infinitely customizable, are easy to build on to and are easy to repair over the years. Stewart Brand in his book “How Buildings Learn” calls these different routes to shelter “high road” and “low road” and has excellent criticisms of each. A vernacular home can be kept in repair for generations, but when abandoned will eventually melt apart and return to the earth like the Iron Age roundhouse in your photo (which in itself can be considered a virtue by the eco-minded).

    Nice blog! I’m glad I came upon it.

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