Monday, March 7, 2011

blog post 8: a spiral of architectural progression

the nautilus has long been a symbol of nature's mathematic perfection-- the logarithmic spiral, which illustrates a unique geometric progression.  but what other progressions could this nautilus symbolize?  the progression in size of a living creature?  the progression of time it took a mollusk to create new chambers within its shell?    

in thinking about the various progressions found within a nautilus, we are reminded that within this delicate shell lies a record--evidence of evolution.  it's in this spirit that i have used the spiraled fibonacci sequence to outline the progression of architecture's evolutionary use of nature's mathematic forms, proportions and symmetry.   

"... because nature, in what it makes, records how it is made.  in the rock is the record of the rock, and in man is the record of man.  man, through his consciousness, senses inside of him all the laws of nature... that which is the nature of man, he inherits, just like his physical being, in this he senses the desire to learn to express."     -louis kahn

"without symmetry and proportion there can be no principles in the design of any temple; that is, if there is no precise relation between its members as in the case of those of a well shaped man."     -vitruvius

photo credits:,,,
beginning with interior point of the spiral, this diagram illustrates:
the yen and yang symbol, the pi symbol, the kofu pyramid at giza, the vitruvian man,  le corbusier's modulor, palladio's villa rotunda, le corbusier's villa savoye and a golden mean diagram of the villa savoy's elevation.

1 comment:

Kathryn said...

This is a nice analysis of what the nautilus means but could there be more connections made with each piece?