Living Building SkinsAreti Markopoulou | IAAC | ka-au
For centuries, we have been building searching for rigidness. This has been related, of course, with the notion of security, protection, property and privacy. Rigid concrete columns were first of all incredibly stable – this is the core importance, beyond feasibility, accessibility and cost. Today we are experiencing a shift in perception of notions such as privacy, solidity or stability. We are constantly on the move, both physically and digitally. We work far from where we live, or we live in more than one city, and more than one home, with multiple possibilities of accessible and quick communications to places and people.
Technologies are thriving in our fluid times, contributing to our familiarization with unprecedented non-solid environments.
At the same time we are experiencing a massive environmental crisis. Increasing atmospheric carbon dioxide, extreme weather events, collapsing ecosystems, desertification, toxic pollution, sea level rise or blue sky extinction are part of an extensive list, both protagonist and cause for the historic gathering and climate pact of 195 countries in Paris in 2016.
For a significant group of architects and researchers, the non-solid environments of our digital era seem to be the perfect playground for exploring novel possibilities for adaptive building solutions that can contribute to our energy-hungry lives and inhabiting style. If the anthropocene (or capitalocene ) scenario of human impact needs constant change – if climate mutates, if information “runs” at extreme speeds of bits and bytes – then our human-made architecture and built space should be able to change, “run” and mutate rather than just merely being inhabited. Architecture shall move and is moving towards the performative , the performative instrument  or the alive .