Visually intriguing geometric forms and silhouettes shape the skyline of many towns and cities assembling a harmonising juxtaposition of long-standing period architecture and modern-day designs. Looking out over the City of London’s horizon, for example, the spherical-shaped cupola of Sir Christopher Wren’s Grade I Listed St Paul’s Cathedral is seamlessly contrasted with the distinctly curved edifice of Norman Foster’s contemporary design, 30 St. Mary Axe – or as it’s informally known, the Gherkin. Just a 20-minute walk from one another, these two examples of remarkable architecture are centuries apart, however, one aspect that connects the two is the geometries that formulate them.
Both globular by form, St Paul’s Cathedral and 30. St Mary Axe connect with us on a deep-rooted level. Suffice to say, both structures are aesthetically pleasing to the eye, however, the shapes and forms they comprise have a much deeper connection with end-users, by-passers and tourists. This all comes down to semiotics; the study of meaning-making, which explores how we psychologically respond to shapes and what subconscious emotions these contours evoke. This concept, however, doesn’t limit itself to the peripheral of a building, rather it voyages into the interior, as David Bigland, Managing Director of Moduleo, explains in this issue. Taking flooring as an illustration, David looks at the subliminal connotation behind shapes such as rectangles, squares and hexagons and investigates into the way we associate these shapes.
To read up more on David’s findings, turn to page 36.
Elsewhere in this month’s issue, FC&A unveils Lund+Slaatto Arkitekter’s origami-inspired design for the Archive House, Norway, Partners at Foster + Partners, Colin Ward and Armstrong Yakubu, talk us through the design of Hong Kong’s latest luxury hospitality offering, The Murray, and ecobuild discusses innovation in timber.
I hope you enjoy this edition. Don’t forget you can also access all of the magazine’s features, product news and supplier information at your fingertips via Future Constructor & Architect’s state-of-the-art app. To download your version free of charge, simply search ‘fc&a’ on Google Play or the App store.