A Rereading of the Interrelationship between Vernacular Architecture and the Architecture Arché

Document Type : Original Article


1 PhD Candidate, Faculty of Architecture and Urban Planning, Art University of Isfahan

2 Assistant Professor, Faculty of Architecture and Urban Planning, Tehran University of Art

3 Assistant Professor, Faculty of Architecture, Tehran University of Art


Reading vernacular architecture to understand values in architecture involves a variety of perspectives. One of these approaches is to consider vernacular architecture as related to the beginning of architecture and there are two common readings of it. The first reading sees vernacular architecture as genotypes in the architectural evolution map as the primary component. The second reading considers it as a subject that has not undergone many changes since the beginning of the history of architecture. It is a reference, therefore, to go to in case there are questions or ambiguities. On the other hand, attempts have been made in architectural theory to find the beginning of architecture in theory, and the concept of the primitive hut coined for it. But the unavailable primitive hut cannot communicate with the beginning of architecture. Due to the necessity of objectifying the conceptual primitive hut, this article tries to show the possibility of a third alternative regarding the connection between the vernacular and the beginning, which is verified by the previous two views, but those views do not take it as far as taking the vernacular to the contemporary and future eras. To achieve this, a three-stage study is conducted. The first stage is an investigation of the relation between the vernacular and the beginning. The second stage is in the form of studying the concept of the beginning and its various aspects in the work of thinkers. The third stage is about investigating the adequacy of the primitive hut as an example for architecture’s beginning. The next stage is about finding empirical representatives, in which vernacular architecture is surveyed as a source of inspiration for theorists about what the primitive hut is like. Finally, considering the features and potentials of the vernacular for this representation, it is argued that this alternative is theoretically and practically possible and has positive consequences. Because of its relation to Arché, this notion of vernacular architecture can reveal the profound epistemological values of its study, research, and experience. Therefore, both areas can benefit from this relationship.


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