Materiality and Time in Danish sustainable architecture

Publikation: KonferencebidragKonferenceabstrakt til konferenceForskningpeer review


Successful examples of sustainable architecture are developed as negotiations between the programme’s adequacy, buildings’ functionality, materials’ quality, environmental efficiency and the aesthetics of chosen solutions. Materials are often chosen at the later stage of the design process, and they are adjusted to the previously created architectural concept. This latter appropriation of the image often subdues the materiality of buildings (Bohme, 2016). The discussion about material choices in sustainable architecture involves the use of i.a., natural and locally sourced materials (Ashby, 2013), reused elements (Addis, 2006; Hebel et al., 2014), recyclable resources (Crowther, 2001) or dismantable systems (Vandkunsten, 2018). Present debate concerning the life-cycles of building elements focuses on their performance but often the design of currently built buildings does not address the issue of passing time and changing appearance of selected architectural solutions, which seems to deny the fact that ‘architecture carries within itself the traces of its future destruction’ (Derrida, 1990; Crains, Jacobs, 2014).

This paper aims to investigate, through the literature review, case studies’ analysis and interviews, how Danish sustainable architecture addresses the issue of passing time, changing qualities of materials and its evolving appearance. Are those issues explored by architects? Is thinking about patterns of usage, maintenance practices, time-related changes addressed in the design processes? Is the process of materials’ ageing considered as a value? Are traces of passing time and patina investigated in relation to the aesthetics of chosen architectural solutions? This article presents how materiality and time are currently addressed in Danish architectural practice.
Antal sider1
StatusUdgivet - 2019
Begivenhed11th Annual Symposium of Architectural Research: Architecture and City as home - Tampere University, Tampere, Finland
Varighed: 3 okt. 20194 okt. 2019


Konference11th Annual Symposium of Architectural Research
LokationTampere University


  • bæredygtig arkitektur
  • materialitet
  • æstetik
  • design process

Kunstnerisk udviklingsvirksomhed (KUV)

  • Nej