Man wants to make himself a dwelling that protects but does not bury him. Some fallen branches in the forest are the right material for his purpose; he chooses four of the strongest, raises them upright and arranges them in a square; across their top he lays four other branches; on these he hoists from two sides yet another row of branches which, inclining towards each other, meet at their highest point. He then covers this kind of roof with leaves so closely packed that neither sun nor rain can penetrate. Thus, man is housed. Admittedly, the cold and heat will make him feel uncomfortable in this house which is open on all sides but soon he will fill in the space between two posts and feel secure.25

In Laugier’s account, man was seeking security, not the creation of a form. BALI HOME PLANS The fundamental DNA of the spaces we build today is the same as that of the crude shelter humans originally sought out or made.

If we venture to restate Laugier ever so slightly, we can easily tease out a latent meaning, which says that the principles of design in general (and the reason for interiors in particular) are based on a person’s “natural instincts. Both mythological and anthropological accounts acknowledge this to some extent, but the design progress that has resulted from these instincts should be seen in the same praiseworthy light as the advancements made in the leap from building to architecture.

The true story of design serves as a counterweight to architecture’s long-standing myths. As was the case with the very first interior, satisfying our innate longing for shelter, both physical and physiological, is still the vital reason we design today. This is the basis for all aspects of the built world and the practice





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