NNN / Real Nature is not Green: Exploring the True Essence of Nature


Hatched by Shalom

May 01, 2024

3 min read


NNN / Real Nature is not Green: Exploring the True Essence of Nature

There is a prevailing misconception that nature is always serene, harmonious, and green. However, real nature can be wild, unpredictable, and even cruel. The word 'nature' stems from the Latin term natura, which was a translation of the Greek word physis. Both these terms share a common root, meaning 'born'. This suggests that nature is not just about the beauty we see, but also about the raw and untamed essence of life itself.

In the realm of architecture, there is a fascinating connection between the concept of nature and the use of concrete as a building material. Architect Denys Lasdun believed that one of the key roles of a modern architect was to create buildings that were deeply connected to their surrounding environment - be it rural or urban. He referred to this as "urban landscapes" and developed his own unique style and language inspired by castles, fortifications, and rock strata. Lasdun's bold choice to use concrete in his designs earned him the title of 'the king of concrete' by former Country Life Architectural Editor Marcus Binney.

Lasdun's approach to architecture was not just about the aesthetics or functionality of a building. He was deeply concerned with how people interacted with the spaces he created. He focused on the experience of moving from one place to another, the relationship between the building and its surroundings, and the subtle nuances that made a space truly captivating. This level of engagement and attention to detail extended to the construction process as well. Lasdun was known to be actively involved on-site, ensuring that every detail was executed to his exact vision. If something did not meet his standards, he would have it redone, even if it meant making design changes.

This parallel between the untamed essence of nature and the use of concrete in architecture offers a unique perspective on our understanding of both. Concrete, often associated with rigidity and man-made structures, can be seen as a medium through which the raw power of nature can be expressed. It is a material that can withstand the test of time, much like the forces of nature that shape our world.

So, what can we learn from this exploration of the true nature of nature and the role of concrete in architecture? Here are three actionable pieces of advice:

  • 1. Embrace the Wild Side: Just as nature can be wild and unpredictable, embrace the untamed aspects of life. Don't shy away from taking risks or pursuing unconventional paths. Sometimes, the most extraordinary outcomes come from stepping outside of our comfort zones.
  • 2. Connect with Your Surroundings: Like Lasdun's "urban landscapes," strive to create meaningful connections with the environment around you. Whether it's through your work, hobbies, or personal relationships, find ways to integrate yourself into the larger tapestry of life. This will not only enrich your own experiences but also contribute to the overall harmony of the world.
  • 3. Pay Attention to Detail: As Lasdun demonstrated, the smallest details can make all the difference. Take the time to notice and appreciate the subtle nuances of your surroundings. Whether it's the way light filters through a window or the sound of leaves rustling in the wind, these details can add depth and beauty to your everyday life.

In conclusion, the misconception that nature is always green and peaceful is far from the truth. Real nature is multifaceted, encompassing both beauty and raw power. Similarly, the use of concrete in architecture, as exemplified by Denys Lasdun, offers a unique perspective on the connection between the man-made and the natural. By embracing the wild side, connecting with our surroundings, and paying attention to detail, we can tap into the true essence of nature and find inspiration in the most unexpected places.

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