Beauty and our homes part. 2

author: Mieczysław Aleksander Sowiński, MA

photo. No. 3: Project "Tyberiusz" single-family house - source: - date of access: 07 September 2009. From left to right: the front of the building and the ground floor plan

Nothing has changed in the impressions and feelings that we had when looking at the first project from photo No. 1. The next ones do not surprise us with anything special, and especially we do not find in them accessories that do not fulfill any function in the building, but are only a decorative element. An example of such an addition can be the stairs of the "Tiberius" project in photo number 3. Both the terrace at the back of the house and the stairs of the main entrance could be an unnecessary expense for some and demand simplification. But how necessary they are from an aesthetic point of view! These are expensive additions, but so necessary to soften the sharp and flashy shapes of the rest of the building. TABLE OF CONTENTS

2.2 Aesthetic aspect

We cannot say anything with certainty about the moment when they began to take care of the external image of single-family houses. In the history of architecture, one cannot find a period in which efforts were made to show aesthetic values in residential buildings. The oldest and most familiar civilization is the Egyptian civilization. The pharaohs were considered gods, and their houses were magnificent palaces where functionality was mixed with beauty. The word "pharaoh" meant "great house" (per-aa) and was used to describe the royal palace. While building a house for the pharaoh, it was also built for the worshiped god, whom the pharaoh was also considered to be. A similar pattern of the ruler of God's anointed, or even god, can be found in many other nations. Over time, the so-called sacrum, worship given to god, began to merge with the profane, building according to the needs of the ruler, not the god-ruler. When the aesthetic values of the building began to be taken care of not because of the person of the god who lives in it, but because of the man, it was this moment, in my opinion, that should be considered the beginning of the architecture of residential houses.

Why was that moment a turning point? According to the previously adopted definition of a single-family house, or more generally, a residential building, it should not only meet the housing needs, which were certainly met by caves and huts of prehistoric peoples, but also the aesthetic needs of man. Such needs began to be met at the moment of the previously described connection between the sacred and the profane.

Just like in the past, today, taking care of the aesthetic values of single-family buildings is a privilege of the wealthier class of our society. Constant efforts to cut costs have led to the fact that the beauty of the building is discussed at the level of the choice of facade colors, plots around the building, or the shape and color of the tile. The buildings are angular and, despite their youth, often disfigure. The departments of architecture issue zoning conditions in which the issue of external appearance is not treated with due diligence. Anyway, it is difficult to expect that state officials would care about the aesthetics of the constructed buildings, when their overriding goal is to comply with the law, which says nothing about aesthetics except the obligation to ensure cleanliness and order around the building.

Other people - apart from government officials - who have a significant impact on the beauty of contemporary single-family buildings are architects, planners, their professional organizations, academic lecturers and writers. The latter include, among others, David Watkin - lecturer in the history of architecture at the University of Cambridge, author of many publications. Here is how he describes current trends in architecture:

“It is obvious that as we stand on the threshold of a new millennium, we are wondering what this new era should look like. There seem to be three main possibilities for architecture: still-blooming postmodernism, with flashy, playful decoration added as a commercial wrapper, high-tech architecture with its constant display of science-fiction-like technologies, and finally, a return to traditional architecture rooted in timeless languages: vernacular and classical. All three types, sometimes combined, have their supporters. [17]

All the above-mentioned officials, architects, artists and others cannot agree with one voice on the same definition of beauty, and what is more, it is common to believe that it is undefinable. The built-up landscape around us often resembles this diversity of views. Can today's investors be expected to build buildings that are not only functional, but also aesthetically valuable? Recalling Kant's definition of beauty and its assumption of a relatively objective sensus communis subjectively conceived in the judgment of taste, we should demand from contemporary builders that their buildings be aesthetically valuable.

When choosing a project, we are mainly guided by its price. So at the very beginning there is a certain verification of our dreams about building the house of our dreams. The vision of paying ten times as much for someone else's intellectual work can wake up many investors from sleep. Gazeta Wyborca wrote about it at the end of August in an article entitled What Poles Like If a house is a manor house with a balcony. [18]

The single-family houses we build have been devoid of any additions that make sense only from an aesthetic point of view, but they do not work at all functionally. It is a pity to spend money on elaborately rolled pillars or spreading stairs wrapped with liana-shaped balustrades.

It would be a mistake to consider the importance of the aesthetic values of architecture without paying attention to their necessary relationship with the functional aspect of the building. What a building looks like is as important as what it is used for and what goals it serves. On the inseparability of these two functions, Roger Scruton writes:

“Many may still doubt, in this state of our consideration, that aesthetic values can be given a central place in our experience, to which we are compelled as thinking beings to conform to our morality. That is why we ask why do we need aesthetic values? A constructivist might say that aesthetic values are about 'what something looks like' when the important thing for him is 'what is its true purpose' or 'what it really does'. […] There is no clear distinction between 'what it looks like', 'what is its purpose' and 'what it can do'. In the art of building, consideration of 'what something looks like' and a legitimate understanding of the end of one's action are inseparable."[19]

What a building looks like is as important as what it is for, what we feel when looking at its external form is just as important as our understanding of the concepts that underlie it.  TABLE OF CONTENTS

Chapter III.

Straight line, circle and wavy line in nature and architecture


3.1 What lines do we have and where do they occur

Each figure can be described by a line. As for their existence, no one needs to be convinced. The problem starts when we want to describe one of the observed lines. Without delving too much into the subject and based on mathematical knowledge, many of us will accept the existence of a straight line and a circle as a fact. For some, these are basic shapes, thanks to which it is possible to describe the reality that surrounds us. We learn about them in schools and we are instilled with their existence from an early age. But in fact, they are only an imagination and our unrealistic simplification of the reality that surrounds us. From observation and thought, we know that there is no such thing as a straight line and a circle that presuppose a certain perfection. There is no perfection in the world around us, and certainly nothing perfectly straight or flat. Everything we observe after careful analysis turns out to be at least slightly curved, or at least slightly uneven.


photo. No. 4: Wavy line. Source: G. Deleuze, The Fold: Leibniz and the Baroque, Minnesota Press Minneapolis 2004, p. 15.

In addition to the line derived from the hypothetical, unreal world, there is another type of line: the wavy line. There are those who assume that a wavy line is a derivative of a straight line and a circle, and there is no such thing as a separate entity such as a wavy line.

On the other hand, I am of the opinion that there is only one line: the wavy one. Its examples can be found in the reality that surrounds us, while a straight line and a circle are an idealistic image of a man and they exist, but only as the subject of our considerations, and the most frequent place of their occurrence is our mind. Sometimes the idea of a straight line and a circle tries to get into the real world, first in the form of drawings, for example computer, then in architecture. However, upon closer examination of this line, we will notice that in fact there is some unevenness in it again.

What really counts is the impression that each line leaves on the recipient. In computer drawings and then in architecture, each of us will see a straight line, regardless of whether it is actually exactly straight or not. Assuming its existence, we assume the existence of a perfectly flat surface. The same is true with the wheel. The world of geometry tries to break into the real reality and builds its colonies first in the world of drawing, then in the world of architecture.

In addition to the two lines - wavy and straight - there is another type of line, which is a derivative of the wavy line and occurs in the world of thought, in the world of spirit. Accepting the existence of this world presupposes my opting for the duality of the reality that surrounds us. I will write about this line in the next part of my work.  TABLE OF CONTENTS


3.2 Waviness of matter

Nature is so much better that we can observe it directly, where the object of observation (e.g. a specific flower) is something empirically given and thus difficult to unquestion. It exists independently of us, the observers, we have no influence on its external image. The shapes we observe are the result of evolution lasting millions of years. One of the few common features of the creations of the nature that surrounds us is the ability to describe each of them with a wavy line. It is probably enough to refer only to our senses, but let's look at how the diversity of nature was emphasized by Ingarden:

“[…] non-geometry with its properly shaped planes, polyhedra, spheres, etc. prevails in organic nature. Here, despite all phenomena, such as symmetry, which appears in the organic world, the principle is rather a particular irregularity, constant deviations from the shapes of abstract geometry. At the same time, despite the preservation of a certain general type (e.g. the shape of an oak leaf or, for example, the shape of a human ear), not only the “same” parts in different individuals differ greatly in shape, but also analogous parts of one and the same organism (e.g. leaves of the same oak) differ in detail from each other in various ways.[20]

The multiplicity of shapes occurring in nature, the eerieness of the line describing the matter has been the subject of admiration of many artists over the centuries. In recent times, the greatest tribute to her has been paid by the period, which in Poland is called Art Nouveau. The beauty of flowers, women and various types of stems was most often admired at that time. Above all, however, the wavy line was worshiped, because it was in it that the features best describing the surrounding reality were perceived. And here is how Mieczysław Wallis talks about the Art Nouveau curve line:

“[...] Art Nouveau, like painting and graphics of the Far East, did not strive for illusionistic effects, it operated with a line and a flat spot. The line therefore played a greater role in it than in the art of the full Renaissance: Art Nouveau was even more "the art of the line" than that. Of the various types of lines, Art Nouveau especially liked a long, flowing, curved, wavy line, a line that seems to be in motion. >>One can say,<< Crane wrote, >>that a wavy line not only suggests movement, but also describes its direction and force. This is actually a line of motion.<<[21] Grasset thought similarly: >>[...] each curve gives an idea of movement and life [...], the route of the curve should be full, rounded, closed and harmonious like a stem full of juice<<.[22] Thus, many art historians see in the sensitive wavy line one of the main features of Art Nouveau. True, there are works of art with crooked lines that do not belong to Art Nouveau, and there are Art Nouveau works in which there are no curved lines: nevertheless, a curved line that bends and bends many times is the most frequent and striking mark of Art Nouveau.[23]

There are many reasons for Art Nouveau's fascination with the beauty of nature, because, as I have already mentioned in my work, man is most attracted to what is changeable, unique and unpredictable. Nature has these features in excess. The wavy lines that appear in it are so different from each other that it is impossible to match another similar one to one of them. These and many other properties make the wavy line apt to attribute the quality of living beings, such as: independence, individuality, uniqueness. I am far from "enlivening" the wavy line here, I only mean the impressions that accompany us while watching it.

We also see a certain relationship between the amount of its occurrence and organicity. The more wavy lines there are in a thing, the more life it has. We do this all the more because man in his external form is full of undulations and curves. Let's take a look at, for example, the shapes and impressions that accompany us while exploring some cavernous rock cave, for example Łokietka. Assuming that we do not know its curls, we will be delighted to admire its wavy shapes. Compared to human shapes, the rock ones are somehow more hewn, carrying some potential of horror and hostility. They are a completely different type of corrugation than human. No wonder, because rocks have no life in them. But what is different with the corrugation of man. Observing our body, we see that there is not a single place in it that we could consider perfectly straight. But it becomes like a rock undulation as it dies and disintegrates. There is another kind of undulation in man, which I will write about in the next chapter of my work.

When we look at something from a longer perspective, many of us are deluded. The observed thing may appear to us as a straight line or a circle. However, when we look at it more closely, it turns out to be corrugated. When examining the world around him, man looks for simplifications that will allow him to understand it faster and more fully. Such simplifications occurred in the way of describing the world during the exploration of the world. It is much easier for us to remember a world that consists of repetitive elements, in this case geometric figures. Nature hates repetition, so it creates new shapes, the number of which is impossible for us to assimilate, so we make simplifications.

Gilles Deleuze has a different opinion on repetition in inanimate nature:

“In fact, only inanimate nature can repeat itself, with a difference of a similar dimension, since it is a certain outer shell (side) that gets inside the body; animate nature, by contrast, envelops an inner sheath (a side) that necessarily contains other species of organisms, such that this time envelops an inner sheath containing other organisms: » Each piece of matter can be conceived as a garden full of plants and as a pond full of plants fish. But every branch of a single plant, every representative of a particular animal, and every drop of their fluid parts is in itself just as much a garden or a pond. Thus, the inorganic fold has come to be uncomplicated and simple, while the organic fold/fold is always multi-layered, variable, intermediate (conceived by the inner shell). Matter is folded twice, the first time by elastic forces, the second time by plastic forces, but neither is able to move towards the other. So the universe is neither a great living being, nor is it an Animal in itself. [24]

The corrugation of matter is not only its external side, the one that we can see with our senses. It is also realized inside matter thanks to its ability to infinitely divide into smaller and smaller organisms, but very complex ones, containing another infinity. In this reality, the undulation is intertwined with the multitude and abundance of life. The next parts of matter have this life in abundance, such that they can give it to what will be born of them. The problem addressed by this work is not served by more and more far-reaching considerations on the multitude of undulations in matter. The fact is one: matter undulates not only outside, but also inside itself. This is true not only in its organic manifestation, but also in its inorganic form.

Below are some examples of the undulation of matter:

photo. No. 5: White currant fruit. Source: - date of access: 07 September 2009.

photo. No. 6: A woman's face. Source: - date of access: 07 September 2009.

photo. No. 7: Spider web with drops of water. Source: - date of access: 07 September 2009.

3.3 Bushy or wavy spirit.

Throughout the centuries, there have been many philosophers who have tried to prove the existence of spirit. The most convincing of all for me is the modern philosopher Descartes with his well-known saying "I think, therefore I am" (cogito, ergo sum). The world of thoughts we are most sure of

"So what am I after all? Something he thinks. What does it mean something that thinks? That is, something that doubts, understands, comprehends, asserts, denies, wills, refuses, imagines, and feels. It is certainly not a little, if all this is in my nature. But also, why shouldn't it belong to me? Am I not the one who doubts almost everything at this moment, who nevertheless understands and comprehends certain things, who ascertains and admits some and denies others, who wants and desires to know them more, someone who does not want to be deceived who imagines many things (sometimes even against his will) and feels many things, as if by the action of the sense organs? […] Well, it is self-evident that I myself am the one who doubts, understands and desires, and that no further explanation is needed here.”[25]

By proving the existence of thought, we prove the existence of spirit. Do thoughts have boundaries, edges, or do they move along a line? It is certainly the case that from one thought others arise, and from these emerge another. In my opinion, there is a kind of "business" of the movements inside our thoughts, which seem to resemble the dendrites of a neuron or a lush bush. There is no straight or wavy line here. For simplicity, it can be assumed that in the world of thought there is a specific type of line consisting of an infinite number of points, from which points another line with properties like the one from which it originates can start.

Deleuze sees the world a little differently:

“If Descartes did not know how to get out of the labyrinth, it was because he looked for the truth of continuity in straight paths, and the truth of freedom in the straightness of the soul. He knew as little about the inclinations of the soul as about the curvatures of matter.[26]

He did not stop at criticizing Descartes, but in one of the chapters of the book The Fold, entitled Folds on the soul, he develops his thought in this way:

“[…] what is rolled up is only virtual and currently exists only in a shell, in something that envelops it. From now on, it's not just a point of view that includes something; or is it, but only as an instrument, but not as a final cause or finished work (entelechy). Inclusion or inseparability has the condition of closure or wrapping that Leibniz takes up in his famous "windowless" formula, which point of view does not sufficiently explain the problem. When we make an insertion, it is continuous, or contains something of a finished work, which is neither a view, nor a place, nor a point of view, but what remains in the point of view, what occupies it, and without which the point of view is not would exist. This something is necessarily a soul, an object. The soul always contains what it understands from its point of view, in other words, the deflection. The inflection is the ideal condition or virtuality that currently exists only in the soul that envelops it. So the soul is that which has folds and is full of folds. The folds are in the soul and at the same time they really exist not only in the soul. This has long been the case with "natural concepts": they are pure virtuality, pure forces whose action is contained in their outer structure and the arrangements (folds) inside the soul, and whose finished work contains the inner workings of the soul (inner disposition). This is also true in the real world: the whole world is only virtuality existing only in the folds of the soul that transmits it, the soul containing the inner pleats by which it bestows upon itself a representation of the whole world. In the theme, we move from deflection to inclusion, as from the virtual world to the real one, deflection describing the fold, and inclusion describing the soul or object, that is, what wraps the fold, its ultimate cause and finished work.”[27]

So the soul has folds, pleats, unevenness. It has settled inside our beliefs and governs them. It is quite a complicated process, and it reports its connection with the real world, which is said to be separated again by a wavy line, a fold. No one directly experienced the world described above, it is a position derived from certain assumptions, the consequence of which is the assumption of the existence of the soul and the folds defining it.

The above description certainly appears more understandable in the original language from which it comes. Not wanting to take away anything from such a complicated thought of the author of the text, I decided to quote a longer fragment of it, and in my opinion very important in the entire course of proving the existence of folds in the intangible world of our thoughts.

photo. No. 8: Neuron with dendrites. Source: - date of access: 07 September 2009.


3.4 Lines in architecture

Originally, the most common line in architecture was the wavy line. Building materials commonly used by man - especially wood - forced him to introduce major innovations in accordance with the generally accepted assumptions of functionality and minimizing the cost of execution. I have mentioned this before. Over the centuries, considerations about buildings, including single-family houses, took place in the imaginary world of drawings. There, people used the tools available to them, which assumed repetition, symmetry and the ability to adjust one part of the building to another (joining the living room with the dining room, dining room with the kitchen). All this was done using the ubiquitous straight lines. What's strange about that? It seems that nothing, until artistically talented people stopped dealing with architecture. It's not about having the ability to draw, but about the ability to convey emotions through the creation of a work, and in this case through works of architecture. A similar position can be found in the Verona concept summary:

Of the theories of art known to him, Tolstoy found only the concept of Verona worthy of attention. Although the latter failed to define art more precisely, he understood that it could not be defined by the vague concept of "beauty" and he correctly perceived that its most important feature is the expression of emotions.[28]

Architects have become mainly engineers, thus moving away from their original artistic sources. Art is primarily a form of communication. It assumes the content and the recipient. It differs from ordinary dialogue in that the content of the message is emotions, and the tools are human works. Applying this definition to contemporary works of architecture, one can say that they have long ceased to serve as a source of social communication of emotions. In the Middle Ages, the slenderness of towers and windows was supposed to direct thoughts and feelings towards God, who, according to the commonly accepted belief, inhabited the expanses of heaven. Art Nouveau architecture was supposed to glorify the perfection and beauty of nature,

photo. No. 9: Casa Milo, Antonio Gaudi. Source: - date of access: 07 September 2009.

photo. No. 10: Gothic Church. Source: - date of access: 07 September 2009.

which, according to Stanisław Lem, is not so perfect in its construction activities[29].

In the works of great artists-architects, one can see the struggle and attempts to combine the delight of beauty with functionality in one work. However, in the case of great engineers-architects, the emphasis is on functionality and utilitarianism, and only then bending it to aesthetic requirements, if at all. In the process of architectural and artistic communication, limiting yourself to the use of straight lines and circles is a similar challenge as writing a poem using only consonants. Let's look at the problem described above through the eyes of Leon Chwistek, a twentieth-century philosopher of art:

“But why exactly should the windows be vertical? Why should the porch lines be straight? Isn't keeping a straight line in today's reinforced concrete buildings an automatic repetition of shapes dictated by the simple necessity of using stone or brick? This question seems decisive. It entails a whole series of detailed questions relating to the shape of the rooms - especially lounges, boudoirs, etc., to the internal arrangement, etc. All this leads, after a moment's reflection, to the conclusion that if we do not want to identify comfort with what we are used to, we must break fundamentally with the straight line in architecture."[30]

The radical nature of the above position indicates that the problem of the kingship in the architecture of a straight line requires a solution not only in theoretical considerations, but also in practice.  TABLE OF CONTENTS

Chapter IV.

The emotional value of the line


A straight or wavy line can be carriers of certain values that are released only in the context of the whole work, in this case, e.g. a single-family house. Observing the line itself without the context in which it was placed does not give us any strong impressions, the fullest of which are those that arouse a sense of pleasure in us.

The topic of impressions arising while observing architecture was the subject of considerations by Jadwiga Sławińska, who in one of the chapters of her book modernizes Theodor Lipps' Theory of Empathy[31]:

“The forms of various objects, e.g. architectural objects, evoke certain feelings in the recipients, which they in turn transfer to the observed objects. This process makes it possible to empathize with works as with beings endowed with a psyche. This leads to merging with them in aesthetic contemplation and finding in them one's own values and desires, only somehow stronger, richer and richer. Architecture is all the more valuable, the stronger the feelings it is able to arouse. We associate the emotional states caused by the perception of works of architecture with the works themselves, not only in the sense that we realize that we owe our moods to them, but that we attribute these moods to them. We feel it as if the building is genuinely smiling at us, or is looking at us grimly, impassively, impassively. However, no one believes that the architectural work is really alive; our sensations in this case are similar to those we feel in relation to living and mental beings.”[32]

Architecture is a collection of straight and wavy lines, which in my opinion should be looked at separately, which I will deal with in the next parts of my work.   TABLE OF CONTENTS

4.1 Impressions when considering a straight line

We often associate a straight line with an attack, because when an animal attacks, it does so in a straight line, when something falls from above or flies at us at high speed, it happens in a straight line.

There is the concept of a simple man and a simple man. The latter is boorish and boorish, in other words, he is a bad person who does evil to other people. The term "simple man" has a completely different meaning. He is a person who accepts the world as he directly perceives it, largely basing his knowledge solely on personal experience. A simple man is someone who can be easily manipulated, he is also dangerous because of his irreformable views. Impressions in the reception of such a person are already more positive than in relation to a simpleton, although not so much to be delighted with them.

Are there any other variations of the word simple? There are many of them, e.g. a simple solution, a simple way, simply, as simple as wire (like building a flail). Generally speaking, simple is something that is dangerous, easy to deal with. A straight line introduces monotony. The lack of change makes us bored quickly. Anything moving in a straight line can pick up speed, it can endanger our lives. In a straight line, it is best to see someone, on flat terrain, it is worse to hide from the threatening danger. We often say that simple solutions are the best, but even more often these solutions lay the foundations for further innovations, which in the end appear to be more complicated than simple. The crossing of straight lines introduces the most anxiety in us, the greater the angle, the more fear it raises in us. In architecture, the most common angle connecting two lines is a right angle. This is the angle at which two bodies collide most severely. The corners are usually gray and gloomy, it's easy to hide behind them or hide in them, for example, to hurt someone. The sharper the angle of intersection of the planes, the more damage it can cause (knife). An example of this can be Stefan Symotiuk's reflections on the practical philosophy of space functioning in Chinese civilization:

"Only the attack is 'simple' <! I odwrotnie: gdzie prosta, tam agresja (…) Można by nawet zauważyć coś więcej: formy proste geometrycznie są dla istot żywych monoton­ne, monotonia zaś jest sama w sobie czymś groźnym.

Here we will limit ourselves to the following observation: for sedentary communities, subject to calm, monotonous, long-term work, everything that is sudden, fast, violent, impetuous, aggressive is dangerous and it is easy to identify rush with evil. Sudden downpours and droughts, rapid streams and winds, aggressive horsemen from the steppes of Mongolia - all this could have caused aversion to a straight line as an attribute of attack in Chinese culture. In the demonology of this nation, evil is what rushes blindly ahead, rushing, pushing, thoughtlessness, posing a threat to the peaceful natives. This also explains the susceptibility of Chinese architecture and urban planning to undulating structures. The roads of the villages, the roofs of houses, the decoration of robes and tools are full of graphic flourishes, which are supposed to hinder the path of movement, create discomfort for ghosts and demons who would like to introduce their crazy runs and flights here. The complexity of shapes in Chinese painting, in the graphics of lettering, the predilection for kites winding in the wind, etc., expresses the spirit of resistance and magical protection against what is simple.[33]

The Chinese civilization is much more experienced than the European one, if only because of the passage of time. According to her, the wavy line comes from the world of thoughts, from the imperceptible world of spirits, while only the road leading to perdition is straight.

4.2 Impressions when considering the wavy line

We have become accustomed to the wavy line since we became aware of having awareness of ourselves. We always liked creatures similar to ourselves the most, Epicharm, Xenophanes in the 6th century BC already said:

"No wonder ... that we like ourselves, and that we think that we have grown up beautifully. After all, a dog considers a dog to be the most beautiful thing, and so does an ox an ox, a donkey a donkey, a pig a pig.

If bulls and horses and lions with arms and legs could paint with them and create works like men, then horses would paint figures of gods like horses and give them bodies, and bulls like bulls, giving them the shapes that a given species has .”[34]

It is true that this text is more literary than philosophical, but it was spoken by sages so famous at that time that it makes us look for a deeper meaning than just stating the obvious facts of the relativity of aesthetic values among various species of animate beings. According to the ancients, the most beautiful man was not only because of his beautiful soul or interior, but also because of the shapes that describe him. Already in ancient times, they were considered the most beautiful of all shapes.

A few centuries later, already in the 1st century BC, the above-quoted literary and philosophical considerations found their outlet in Vitruvius's very practical treatise On Architecture, Book X, which was treated as the bible of architecture until modern times. Here is what Vitruvius writes about the symmetry and perfection of man:

“Symmetry is the harmonious correspondence resulting from the members of the work itself and the interdependence between the specific members of individual parts and the work as a whole. […] The composition of temples is based on symmetry, the laws of which should be strictly observed by architects. Symmetry is born from the proportion called in Greek άυαλογία - analogy. Proportion is the use of a fixed module in each work, both for the members of the building and for its whole, from which the law of symmetry follows. No building can have a proper arrangement without symmetry and good proportions, which should be based strictly on the proportions of the body of a well-built man."[35]

A wavy line gives us comfort and makes us feel positive, especially when it is combined with intersecting straight lines. They can be an example here building designsin which such contrasts were used. Roundness and waviness are the most familiar to us, we are used to seeing them and we often associate them with fluidity. We are positively influenced by the fluidity of sounds of an instrument or piece of music, fluidity of speech, fluidity of movements, fluidity of events and at the same time their changeability, variabilism are other manifestations of very broadly understood undulation. Antonio Filarete wrote about the psychology of arches in the 15th century, showing that ogive arches, and thus also the sharp crossing of straight lines, are perceived negatively by man and are unpleasant to his eye:

“The reason why solid arches are more beautiful than sharp ones: there can be no doubt that anything that obscures vision in some way is not so beautiful as that which can be freely followed by the eye, which is not obscured by anything. When you see a full arc, nothing disturbs the eye in seeing it, so it is also when you look at a circle, the eye embraces it at first sight and is active without any hindrance, so it is with a semi-circle, the sight goes from one end to the other without inhibition the second. However, it is different with the pointed arch."[36]

The whole organic reality that surrounds us is folded. When we look at one fold, we see other folds within it. This is due to ever closer and more accurate penetration into matter, which in its final, smallest manifestation is not an indivisible point, but a fold that connects everything. Here is how the French professor of philosophy, Gilles Deleuze, presents the above thesis while interpreting the thought of Gottfied Leibniz, a seventeenth-century philosopher:

“[…] a flexible or flexible body still has congruent parts that form a fold, such that they are not divided into parts, but rather infinitely divided into smaller and smaller folds that always retain a certain coherence. […] The fold is always curled up inside itself, like a grotto in a cave. A part of matter, the smallest element of a maze, is a fold, not a point that is never a part, but simply the end of a line. This is why parts of matter are masses or aggregates, as a correlate of elastic compressive force. So no crease is not the opposite of crease, but it follows the crease to the next crease. The particles >>go into folds,<< which is a >>strange transformation that is constantly taking place<<. Folds of wind, water, fire and earth, and underground folds of ore veins in the mine. In a system of complex interactions, certain ripples of "natural geography" allude to the action first of fire and then of waters and winds upon the earth; and the veins of metal in mines are like conical forms, sometimes ending in a circle or an ellipse, at other times straightening into a hyperbola or a parabola." [37]

The ubiquitous waviness makes us begin to define the reality that surrounds us. Because if we assume that the more undulations, the more life there is in an organism, then from this point it is easy to come to the conclusion that undulations are a manifestation of life, and the more of it, the more attractive what we look at seems to us. I will return once more to Deleuz's interpretation of Leibniz's thought:

“Organic matter can be defined by its ability to bend its parts and to straighten them, but not indefinitely, but to the extent that each species has been assigned. […] to develop means to strengthen, to grow; on the other hand, folding is a fading away, decreasing, >>moving into the corner of the world<<. However, a simple metric change does not explain the difference between the organic and the inorganic, the machine and the motivating force. It would not show that the movement is not simply from one greater or lesser part to another, but from fold to fold. When a part of a machine is still a machine, the smaller part of it is not the same as the whole of it."[38]

photo. No. 11: Allen Jones. Source: U. Eco, Historia Piękna, Rebis, Poznań 2005, p. 15.

Concluding the above considerations, I dare say that we have the greatest liking for what is undulating, the undulations of the surrounding world, in which the most attractive in terms of aesthetic values is the other person. Man has the most undulations and curves that suit us. As we age, we shrink and curl inside ourselves, and what used to be firm and round, then becomes flat and not as wavy and attractive as it used to be.

photo. No. 12: Model. Source: U. Eco, Historia uglidoty, Rebis, Poznań 2007, p. 165.

Chapter V

Is it possible to compromise between straight and wavy lines in architecture? Is beauty in the architecture of single-family houses just an ornament or something else?

             By compromise, I mean coexistence. Earlier in this work, I pointed out that the full language of the architect-artist is the use of a straight line and a wavy line and all variations of the above lines in his works. Everything else depends on the intensity of their occurrence. If in a single-family building the majority of shapes are rectangles and triangles, and the wavy line is only the outline of communication routes inside the building, then in this case it can be said with certainty that the ratio of straight lines to wavy lines has not been maintained. It is extremely difficult for us to see the beauty in such a building, unless it has been decorated with small architecture around the building, vegetation, color, facade structure and, for example, wavy tiles in a non-distinguishing color. It is quite the opposite when most of the lines in the building are wavy - semi-circular: the roof, the body of the building, window openings, balconies - gently changing from shape to shape. Assuming that the proportions have been preserved and symmetry has not been abandoned, such a work may appear beautiful. I deliberately omit the issue of functionality here, because with today's development of construction technologies and design ideas, it is possible to build what was once completely impossible.

In general and in simplification, it can be said that a straight line symbolizes attention to functionality, while a wavy one can provide the building with aesthetic values. The trade-off between the lines is as necessary as it is between functionality and beauty in single-family houses:

“Buildings are places where people live, work and pray, and a certain form is imposed on them from the beginning by the needs and desires that the planned building is to meet. While it is impossible to compose a piece of music without assuming that it should be listened to and consequently appreciated by someone, it is certainly possible to design a building without the intention of admiring it - without the intention, that is, to create something aesthetically indifferent. Even if some aesthetic qualities appear in architecture, we still find a strong imbalance with other forms of art. For no piece of music or literature can have a quality by which we can say that it does, because of the functions of music, or because of the functions of literature, such characteristics are unattainable. Of course, a musical or literary work may have a function, as is the case with Pindar's waltzes, marches, or odes. But these functions do not derive from the essence of the literary or musical arts." [39]

The greatest danger on the way to beautify the architecture of single-family houses is their decoration, i.e. better or worse forms of softening the sharpness of the shapes of buildings. Outside, this is achieved by planting plants (trees, bushes), building fountains, painting in calming colors. Inside the building curtains, drapes, tablecloths, paintings, sculptures, fireplaces and colors serve a similar purpose. What if all these extras run out? The rectangular-triangular building disfigures the surrounding landscape. Roman Ingarden, among others, in his lectures on aesthetics in April 1960, spoke about the "prostheses" used by us, which were supposed to create a false impression of beauty:

“For example, when it comes to architecture, we're going to have some trouble seeing the forms of an organism in it. Naturally, there are many decorative moments in architecture that are taken from the organic world, but not so much from the human world, as from the world of plant forms. A man also appears in architecture, but as an element of sculptural decoration, e.g. a large Gothic portal will be decorated with a multitude of various saints, human figures, etc. But this is already sculpture applied to architecture as a decorative element, it is not a pure architectural element.”[40]

There will almost always be an element of undulation in angular buildings, and that will be us, if we use it. To the outside observer, there will be many disparities and incompatibilities between the man and his creation. The lines in the angular buildings are long and therefore "heavy", compared to the filigree lines of a man who hides many details and surprises. Certainly, beautification of buildings with the above-mentioned additions is very useful for them and is by all means desirable. However, as I said before, this is an uncertain form of caring for the aesthetic dimension of our homes.

Looking for beauty, we first notice it in another person and we would like similar impressions to last during our contact with other organic and inorganic creations. However, when we deprive a man of all so-called accessories, decorations, then in an undamaged form, he still remains a beautiful object of our admiration. However, this is not the case with buildings. TABLE OF CONTENTS

Chapter VI.

Practical solutions. Gaudí and others

At the very beginning, I present photos of already completed projects that are very popular among investors.

photo. No. 13: Building a Dome House in Poland. Source: - date of access: 07 September 2009.

photo. No. 14 Interior of the Dome House. Source: - date of access: 07 September 2009.

In this type of buildings it is possible to combine functionality with commonly understood beauty. The only problem may be to furnish them, especially when we want to use wood for it. In addition to the dome solutions of houses full of roundness and spherical shapes, there are also Richard Buckminster Fuller's geometric domes, which are full of angularity, but the angles used in them are obtuse and you can rarely see acute or right angles. This is a kind of compromise between round houses in the shape of a ball and currently erected angular blocks of single-family houses.


photo. No. 15: Single-family house, Fuller's Dome. Source: - date of access: 07 September 2009.

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