Human Spaces – Latest Posts

Artful Restoration

May 22, 2016

Last October, during the first weekend of the Chicago Architecture Biennial, artist and social activist Theaster Gates pulled back the curtain on his latest endeavour: the Stony Island Arts Bank. The highly trumpeted project entailed the conversion of a derelict bank building on the city’s South Side into a public cultural venue, brimming with galleries,…

Designing With Colour: Neutrals

April 4, 2016

Colour choice can evoke mood, communicate subtle messages – even boost productivity. Where warm colours excite and cooler hues are calming, neutrals can provide a canvas for either, giving designers a wide array of options. Meaning Most people perceive neutral shades as “subdued” or “reserved”– more subtle than attention-getting blues and reds. Neutrals often connote…

Biophilic Retail Spaces

March 18, 2016

Living within a consumer society means that retail environments play a central position in our everyday lives – in fact, retail covers 43% of the total value of commercial property1 and a recent House of Commons report stated that during 2014, consumers in the UK spent around a staggering £378 billion.2 Research has shown that…

14 Patterns of Biophilic Design: Presence of Water

March 9, 2016

Water – from crashing waves to trickling streams, wading pools, and water fountains – enhances the experience of a place. Pattern 5: Presence of Water The Presence of Water biophilic design pattern has evolved from research on the health and wellbeing benefits associated with access to water, including reduced stress, lower heart rate and blood…

Biomimicry & The Biomimetic Office Building

February 17, 2016

An Interview with Michael Pawlyn, Architect & Author In The Biomimetic Office Building, lighting takes its inspiration from the translucent four-eyed spookfish and a spindly-legged cousin of the starfish, the brittle star, both deep ocean dwellers. The building’s glazed glass exterior nods to a mollusk’s iridescent shell, while our own double duty spinal column is…

A Focus on Nature: The Attention Restoration Theory

January 21, 2016

Spending a long period of time on a task that requires intense focus and concentration can be mentally exhausting for the human brain. Within modern day working environments, we are required to remain attentive during different tasks and activities throughout the day. However, working under pressure, or for a vast period of time can increase…

Ecological Valence Theory and the Use of Colour in Design

December 23, 2015

Why do we prefer certain colours to others? Why do some colours make us feel happy and energised while other colours make us feel agitated or sad? The Ecological Valence Theory Object and colour association – a concept that Palmer and Schloss have called the “ecological valence theory” – contribute to our natural colour preferences…

14 Patterns of Biophilic Design: Complexity & Order

December 14, 2015

Complexity, as one of the more abstract biophilic concepts, has gained quite a bit of traction as a welcomed design challenge. We talk about the objective of the Complexity & Order pattern (#10) as a means for creating a visually nourishing environment, based on an understanding of the symmetries, fractal geometries and spatial hierarchies that…

Featured Contributor

Oliver Heath

Oliver Heath

As a leading figure in biophilic design, Oliver is working with global modular flooring manufacturer Interface to raise the awareness of the benefits of design inspired by nature. A prominent thinker in the architecture industry and owner of Heath Design Ltd, Oliver is also a writer and TV presenter.

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