Author(s): John May
Vernacular architecture, by its very nature, is built from local materials that are readily to hand and is thus defined by the geology and ecology of the region and by local climatic conditions. Constructed by the community using traditional tools, these structures are highly practical, energy-efficient, and blend with the landscape. They carry many of the attributes that we are now seeking in green architecture as we struggle to adapt our built environment to the demands and concerns of the climate-change era. "Handmade Houses and Other Buildings" looks at everyday structures all over the world, from whatever wood, grass, earth or stone that was to hand, in ways that offered practical solutions to the challenges of climate or terrain. Based on immemorial principles, but highly relevant to our newly found environmental concerns, these buildings show the simple and satisfying ways in which humans have worked out how to live and live well, in harmony with their surroundings.