The forms of the human body and the plant world as a source of inspiration for many architects and designers
The human body exerts an allure in humans. In some respects, it is not unlike the attraction between animals, but it certainly functions in a more conscious, rational and emotional way. In any case, it is less purely instinctive. The body is an existential instrument, but it is also an object of seduction, attraction and conquest. This much is clear. Yet the formal and conceptual definitions that humans have historically given their bodies, and the figurative expressions deriving from them, are not entirely obvious. From the silhouette appearing in Egyptian hieroglyphs to the mythical idealisation of Greek and Roman gods; from Christianity’s man in the image of God to the man of classical proportions in the Renaissance; from the Enlightenment to Le Corbusier’s Modulor and the avatars or replicants of recent invention. Such imaginations and theorisations have succeeded one another, leaving clear signs in the evidence we have of the various eras. In recent times, mechanical and digital technologies have made it possible to simulate the fluidity and organic quality of hands, arms, legs, torsos and heads with increasing precision. Bodies — human or otherwise — and the living matter of the plant world have influenced many architects and designers committed to defining the shape and appearance of the objects, tools and spaces that are necessary to us, and they do so with new and alternative methods. Organic, fluid, soft, rounded, sinuous and enveloping, these forms emanate an engaging sensuality. They become increasingly inspiring with the advancement of scientific knowledge and the ability to replicate nature’s wonders. Albeit fantastic, it is not enough, because Eros is, above all, a captivating mental condition which can only be achieved by stimulating the mind’s sensory receptors. There’s still a long way to go.