A review of the presence and use of fractal geometry in architectural design
Although references to fractals in architecture are made frequently, to date a systematic, encompassing, scholarly treatment of the use and presence of this geometrical language in architecture is missing. Often such references are made only cursorily and give a limited view on the possible cross-fertilizations between fractal geometry and architecture. In this paper an attempt is made to remedy this, aiming to present a systematic review of the use and presence of fractal geometry in architecture. The paper starts off with a short introductory section. In section 2 some of the theoretical basics about fractal geometry are reviewed. On the basis of this, possible interpretations of the concept ‘fractal architecture’ and the problems associated with them are made explicit and discussed. In section 3 a review of the different ways in which fractal geometry has been related to architecture is presented. Section 4 touches upon quantitative methods to analyze the fractal aspects of architecture. The fifth section is a discussion of a number of methods and heuristics based on fractal geometry to create architectural work. In the final section, possible explanations for the (apparent) perennial interest in fractal form in architecture are discussed.
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