AccScience Publishing / JCAU / Volume 5 / Issue 4 / DOI: 10.36922/jcau.1006
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The seductive choreography of space: Learning regenerative design strategies from (cyborg) flowers

Rachel Armstrong1 Anna Vershinina1 Rolf Hughes1*
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1 Department of Architecture, Faculty of Architecture, Campus Sint Lucas, KU Leuven, Ghent, Brussels, Belgium
Journal of Chinese Architecture and Urbanism 2023, 5(4), 1006
Submitted: 27 May 2023 | Revised: 15 August 2023 | Published: 13 September 2023
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Regenerative Architecture)
© 2023 by the Author(s).. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution -Noncommercial 4.0 International License (CC BY-NC 4.0) ( )

Unlike traditional net-zero emissions approaches, regenerative methods not only manage resources efficiently but also invigorate the environment. Architects focusing on regenerative design can draw inspiration from flowering plants, whose exceptional spatial strategies exemplify the choreography of ecosystem interactions that sustain fertility. The paper introduces the concept of “XENO,” an artistic installation comprising a robotic carnivorous plant, a mosquito, and a microbially-powered fuel cell, exhibited at CIVA, Brussels in 2023. This installation serves as an epistemic object, exploring complex energy system diversity, ethics, and interactions. XENO’s cyborgian elements encapsulate the intricate relationships and energy flows present in ecological architecture, highlighting the ethical concerns that exceed conventional eco-friendly practices, to explore life and death cycles, microbial decomposition, and material transformation within ecosystems — all of which form the basis for new life. In this way, flower structures provide a creative lens for ecological architects to integrate scientific knowledge, societal values, and experience design in ways that foster diverse and ethically resonant energy exchanges that contribute to a more balanced and environmentally conscious future.

Leizhou Peninsula
Cohesive village
Spatial morphology
This work is supported by funds from the Department of Architecture, Faculty of Architecture, KU Leuven, Ghent, Belgium, and also from the Mi-Hy EIC Pathfinder Challenges project.

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Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no competing interests.
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Journal of Chinese Architecture and Urbanism, Electronic ISSN: 2717-5626 Published by AccScience Publishing