Page 6 - The New ARCH Vol1 No2 (2014)
P. 6
International Journal of Contemporary Architecture ”The New ARCH“ Vol. 1, No. 2 (2014) ISSN 2198-7688
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THE
METEOROLOGICAL



ARCHITECTURE



OF PHILIPPE RAHM





We may have experienced various concepts that aim to become new practice in this century and bring the modern
society closer to what is ultimate goal of sustainability. Some of these ideas are perhaps radical now but their roots are
natural and the final outcome always pushes forward architecture in a new direction towards better future. It is not an
optimistic approach. It is a research based and design demanding practice that is in favour of sustainable development,
heat insulation, climate condition, the use of renewable energies and whole life cycle of materials, etc.
Taking into account that nearly 50% of greenhouse gas emissions comes from energy used to heat or cool dwellings,
Rahm creates architecture that treats the interior climate of the space as a new architectural language, a language for
architecture rethought with meteorology in mind. All know n phenomena such as convection, conduction or evaporation
for example are new tools for architectural composition. This is the architecture where vapour, heat or light become
the new bricks of contemporary construction.
“Climate change is forcing us to rethink ar chitecture radically, to shift our focus away from a purely visual and functional
approach towards one that is more sensitive, more attentive to the invisible, climate-related aspects of space. Slipping
from the solid to the void, from the visible to the invisible, from metric composition to ther mal composition, architecture
as meteorology opens up additional, more sensual, more variable dimensions in which limits fade away and solids
evaporate.”


Philippe Rahm is architect, principal in the office of Philippe Rahm
architectes, based in Paris, France. His work, which extends the field of
architecture from the physiological to the meteorological, has received
an international audience in the context of sustainability. In 2002, he was
th
chosen to represent Switzerland at the 8
Architecture Biennale in
Venice, and was one of the 25 Manifesto's Architects of Aaron Betsky's
2008 Architectural Venice Biennale. He was nominee in 2009 for the
Ordos Prize in China and in 2008 and 2010 for the International Chernikov
Prize in Moscow where he was ranked in the top ten. He has participated
in a number of exhibitions worldwide (Archilab, Orleans, France 2000; SF-
MoMA 2001; CCA Kitakyushu 2004; Centre Pompidou, Paris, 2003-2006
and 2007; Manifesta 7, 2008; Louisiana museum, Denmark, 2009;
Guggenheim Museum, New-York 2010). In 2007, he had a personal
exhibition at the Canadian Centre for Architecture in Montreal.
Rahm was a resident at the Villa Medici in Rome (2000).
He was Headmaster at the AA School in London in 2005-2006, Visiting
professor at the Mendrisio Academy of Architecture in Switzerland in
2004 and 2005, at the ETH Lausanne in 2006 and 2007, at the School of
Architecture of the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts of Copenhagen in
2009-2010, in Oslo at the AHO in 2010-2011. From 2010 to 2012, he held
the Jean Labatut Professorship in Princeton University, USA. He has
lectured widely, including at Harvard School of Design, Cooper Union,
UCLA and the ETH Zurich.



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