Matter is but Captured Energy

In the chapter “Matter is but Captured Energy”, Kiel Moe talks about how materials all possess energy. The author explains how Architects have moved away from focusing on this energy and almost hide it away from the public. By placing one layer on top of another, and on top of yet another; it hides the way energy passes through the matter. Kiel Moe states that as architects try to reduce the amount of energy a building requires, they use more and more materials. This is not efficiency and instead is counterproductive. He suggests that architects should use local materials whenever possible and think of ways to reduce waste.

Kiel Moe also explains in this chapter that architects today focus so much on reducing cost and materials needed, that buildings and structures are no longer able to withstand time. He uses the examples of Roman bridges and how they have withstood “90 generations while steel bridges may withstand two or three”. Even though Roman bridges use more material to construct, they are more efficient and reduce the amount of material needed overtime. I believe that Kiel Moe has made a very important point. Buildings and structures today often require more maintenance than those which were created by our ancestors. They often have difficulty withstanding time because of the small amounts of materials used.

There is a link between the readings and my project because my project is built out of the landscape. For the edges of the structure, I can uses local materials which will last for extended periods of time. I enjoyed this reading and I hope that it will influence my projects in the future.


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