What is Organic Architecture?

February 2019

An Environmentally Integrated Approach To Design

The term “organic architecture” was first coined by American architect, Frank Lloyd Wright (1867-1959) when describing his specific approach to architecture. It was a natural evolution from the previously standing “form follows function” design notion of the time. Wright believed that form and function should be integrated. Organic architecture is a philosophical design approach that strives to achieve a harmonious environment by blending interiors and exteriors. The buildings should have a connection to the sites within which they sit while providing the occupants with a connection to the environment. This concept is achieved through a well-integrated approach with the site, building, furnishings and surroundings as they all become part of a unified composition.

Frank Lloyd Wright’s Fallingwater

Frank Lloyd Wright’s Fallingwater exemplifies his revolutionary approach. Designed in 1935, Wright referenced the surrounding natural forms, materials and colors that would later become part of the home. He took inspiration from a rock that jutted out over the streaming waterfall, and designed the house to hover over it and appear part of the setting while the water flowed beneath.

Stillwater Dwellings Boring, OR

At Stillwater, our architects skillfully refine each home design based on the unique characteristics of the site and the homeowner’s lifestyle thereby unifying form and function. With each design, we make an effort to not only capture the views of nature, but to evaluate the surrounding elements. Some of these include light, wind, and color, which are blended into one harmonious environment – all while maintaining the unique Stillwater persona our homeowners cherish.

Stillwater Dwellings Portland, OR

“Study nature, love nature, stay close to nature. It will never fail you.”
-Frank Lloyd Wright