ruminations about architecture and design

Monday, November 25, 2013

when a wall is not a wall it is still a wall

It is a general rule of thumb in architecture that a wall is perpendicular to the surface of the planet. This principle holds for most buildings, but some architects like to push the envelope (literal pun there) and generate spaces that are defined by tilted enclosures. There's nothing wrong with this, but examples tend to be rare.

From the perspective of building scientists, the orientation of any surface of a structure is merely one condition that impacts performance in relation to water, air, light, sound, and construction technique. A wall can be a roof or a floor, as long as all of these forces are accounted for.

I tend to prefer vertical walls. If a wall tilts out, I think of it as a wall, but if it tilts in, I think of it as a roof. On that note: window sills are roofs.

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