Biophilia (meaning love of nature) focuses on human’s innate attraction to nature and natural processes.
It suggests that we all have a genetic connection to the natural world built up through centuries of living in agrarian settings.
Biophilic Design uses these ideas as principles to create a human-centered approach that when applied improves many of the spaces that we live and work in today, with numerous benefits to our health and well-being.
Incorporating direct or indirect elements of nature into the built environment have been demonstrated through research to reduce stress, blood pressure levels, and heart rates, whilst increasing productivity, creativity and self-reported rates of well-being.
Businesses at the vanguard of workplace design such as Apple, Google and Amazon are investing heavily in Biophilic Design elements.
These principles are shown to improve worker concentration, engagement, and cognitive ability.
Studies conducted over the last 35 years have shown the benefits of adopting biophilic design.
Regarding hospitality design, guests seem to be willing to pay 23% more for rooms with views of Biophilic elements.
In retail, the presence of vegetation and landscaping has been found to increase average rental rates on retail spaces with customers indicating they were willing to pay 8-12 % more for goods and services.
The benefits of biophilic design extend to our homes, which can become more calming and restorative.
There are 6 main features to consider when it comes to biophilic design:
1. Natural Environment
Features of the natural world should be incorporated into the spaces to create a natural environment.
Basic things like earthy colors, sunlight, plants, images of animals and nature.
2. Natural Shapes
Natural shapes are lines, shapes, and forms that occur in nature.
Some examples include arches and vaults, recreating rock shelves, water paths, and other things that naturally occur.
3. Natural Patterns
Similar to natural shapes, natural patterns deal with patterns and processes that occur in nature.
This could be shown through the erosion of rock over time, the growth of plants, and through the use of rhythm and scale.
4. Natural Light
Sunlight is healthy and biophilic design puts an emphasis on light and space.
Light helps merge the inside and outside using elements of warmth and different shapes.
You can focus on real plants, imagery, or plant colors.
The idea here is to create a relationship between the space and the natural elements it is incorporating.
6. The Human-Nature Relationship
Biophilic design is all about recreating the relationship between humans and nature, that has existed for thousands of years.
Interior design hasn’t been the same since biophilia entered the picture. This design trend promises to stay strong during 2020.
The biophilia effect proves that humans long for a connection with nature.
Biophilic design elements should stimulate more than just our visual senses, offering a multi-sensorial experience.
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