Biorealism in the Settlement Architecture of Richard Neutra

in Research Culture in Architecture

Abstract

- The Austrian-American architect Richard Neutra dedicated his work to the ideal of a human-adapted architecture that aims to serve and activate its inhabitants’ vitality and capability. Neutra chose the term biorealism to describe his claims and published them in his book Survival through Design (1954). His German settlements near Frankfurt and Hamburg allow a unique analysis of the biorealistic planning approach in a homogeneous context. Professor Michael Ostwald itemized Neutra’s theories of biorealism into three core issues. He developed an analytical process based on space syntax analysis to investigate whether Neutra’s strategies are measurably present in his designs. A comparative analysis between Neutra’s settlement buildings and adjacent buildings which were modeled on his characteristic style, is the foundation for the discussions on whether biorealism is constructible, and whether it can have any meaning for today’s planning.

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