WIT Press

Moorish Architectural Syntax And The Reference To Nature: A Case Study Of Algiers


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Page Range

541 - 551




1,711 kb

Paper DOI



WIT Press


L. Chebaiki-Adli, N. Chabbi-Chemrouk


The analogy to nature in architectural conception refers to anatomy and logical structures, and helps to ease and facilitate knowledge related to buildings. Indeed, several centuries ago, since Eugène Violet-le-Duc and its relationship to the botanic, to Phillip Steadman and its biological analogy, many studies have already facilitated the understanding and apprehension of many complex systems, about buildings in the world. Besides these morphological and structural aspects, environmental preoccupations are now imposing themselves as new norms and values and reintroducing the quest for traditional and vernacular know-how as an alternative to liveable and sustainable settlements. In Algiers, the exploration of traditional buildings, and Moorish architecture, which date from the 16th century, interested many researchers who tried to elucidate their social and spatial laws of coherence. An excellent equilibrium was in effect, set up, by a subtle union between local culture and environmental adaptability. It is in continuation of André Ravéreau’s architectonics’ studies that this paper will make an analytical study of a specific landscape, that of a ‘Fahs’, a traditional palatine residence situated at the extra-mural of the medieval historical town. This ‘Fahs’ constitutes an excellent example of equilibrated composition between architecture and nature. The objective of this study being the identification of the subtle conjugation between space syntax and many elements of nature, such as air, water and green spaces/gardens.


Moorish architecture, space syntax, nature, horticulture phenomenon, green spaces and gardens, sky and solar, air, water