zombies are a part of contemporary consciousness, certainly in the US, and i had read an article stating that zombies in movies and modern culture let us deal with the anxiety of unknown threats. zombies don’t have any set strategy and not much purpose except to kill you and everyone you know. the article said this was a way to deal with real life issues such as terrorism, which also often defies logic or predictability
but do zombies affect the way architects design new buildings?
maybe so! in an interesting article, The zombie dividend: Has apocalypse helped architecture?, the author looks at how the zombie meme and events such as storms and shootings affect how buildings and public spaces are designed. the article touches on two architectural needs – defensive architecture and restorative architecture
OpenSim, and Second Life, allow us to make our homes and entire multi-region worlds in any way we like. in fact, we can make many versions of theses spaces. i look at what i do for “fun” with OpenSim and see both types of architecture being expressed, even if i didn’t give it any thought!
for example, the dystopian Haxor Outpost freebie is a defensive structure with built-in guns and a big electro-futuristic canon turret. there’s a walled structure with metal gates at sea level implying that “bad stuff” exists beyond its confines. there’s even some form of floating warning beacons or force field that imply that harm can come from above as well. it even has its own underwater nuclear power facility to be full self-sufficient and isolated
on the other hand, the Floating Ice Campus (under development) is open with easy access to each level. while it isn’t a restorative build, it certainly isn’t a defensive one. easy to see arrows help guide the visitor to the different levels of the build and a floating cloth canopy for the amphitheatre isn’t designed to be bomb proof or even rainproof! the floating “iceberg” part is meant to combine natural wonder into the build
when i think restorative, i think of places like Straylight Botanical in Second Life – in effect a plant shop on a beautifully terraformed and landscaped sim
the article above talks about really interesting perspectives and i’d encourage anyone who likes making buildings or designing entire regions and worlds to take a few moments to read it
here’s an excerpt
Studies show that well-designed buildings can relieve anxiety, lower our blood pressure and sharpen thinking. Children in poorly designed buildings tend to display more distracted, hyperactive and tense behaviors.
the article is short but offers some principles to help shape your design of buildings and spaces =)