The Shape of Energy

GSD | Sean Lally

The following essay is a revised version of a chapter of the same name from my book The Air from Other Planets: A Brief History of Architecture to Come (Zurich: Lars Müller Publishers, 2013).

Published in "Projective Ecologies", 2014

Creating the boundaries that define and separate activities is an essential act in architectural design. A boundary distinguishes a change that allows two separate activities to exist adjacent to each other. The material characteristics that create these boundaries inform the shapes that architecture can take, influencing spatial organizations, conglomerations and subdivisions, and typologies, while simultaneously providing a measure of value, whether aesthetic or monetary.

Full content is available only for registered users. Please login or Register


[1] Robert E. Cook, “Do Landscapes Learn? Ecology’s ‘New Paradigm’ and Design in Landscape Architecture,” in Environmentalism and Landscape Architecture, ed. Michel Conan (Washington, D.C.: Dumbarton Oaks, 2000).
[2] Robin Evans, “Figures, Doors, and Passages,” in Translations from Drawing to Building and Other Essays (Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 1997), 56.
[3] Ibid., 89.
[4] Ibid., 70.
[5] Ibid., 88.
[6] Charles Rice, The Emergence of the Interior, Architecture, Modernity, Domesticity (London and New York: Routledge, 2007), 2.
[7] Ibid.
[8] Rem Koolhaas and Bernard Tschumi, “Two Architects, Ten Questions on Program,” Praxis: Journal of Writing and Building 8, ed. Amanda Reeser Lawrence and Ashley Schafer (2006): 6–15.