Fractal Geometry in Architecture

  • Josephine VaughanEmail author
  • Michael J. Ostwald
Living reference work entry


Fractal geometry is a product of fractal theory, a mathematical approach that describes the way space is filled by figures or objects. A fractal geometric figure is one that can be iteratively subdivided or grown in accordance with a series of rules. The overall fractal figure then has parts, which under varying levels of magnification tend to look similar – if not identical – to each other, and the figure fills more space than its topological boundaries. While pure mathematical fractal figures can be infinite in their iterations, there are examples of fractal shapes with limited scales that can be found in architecture. This chapter briefly outlines the background of fractal theory and defines fractal geometry. It then looks at the confusion surrounding the claims about fractal geometry in architecture before reviewing the way architecture and fractal geometry can be combined through inspiration, application, or algorithmic generation.


Fractal geometry Architecture Design Interpretation Critique 


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© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.The University of NewcastleNewcastleAustralia

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