Article | 2009

Sense and Response: A Bioclimatic Dialogue of Place

By Victor Olgyay

Preindustrial societies had an intimate connection to their environments in part because survival was dependent on a constructive understanding. This resulted in fantastic forms of settlement that maintained a stable and sustainable relationship. Increasing use of energy and technical prowess allowed societies to loosen this relationship, at times becoming abstract and capricious. Our current increasing awareness of our ecological dependence has resulted in a renaissance of understanding of how we should inhabit the earth. A new sensing of our place in the world has engendered a bioclimatic relationship, resulting in new forms of settlement which respond to place. This paper analyzes human’s historical and contemporary responses to the biological environment.