Colour design of textile architectural envelopes: an initial study

  • Alessandro Premier School of Architecture and Planning, Creative Arts and Industries, The University of Auckland, New Zealand
Keywords: Textile Architecture, Textile Materials, Colour Design, Architectural Design


Textile materials are now widely used in the construction of architectural envelopes. Even if a wide range of colours is available today, only few of them seem to be preferred by the designers. A better understanding of this phenomena could be achieved through the study of the use of colour in relation to these architectural artefacts. In order to do so, the paper aims to show some of the interactions between the colour of textile architectural installations and some of the components that affect their design, in particular: form, function, lighting technologies and the context. The methodology of the research is based on a selected sample of buildings. These buildings have been investigated according to their surface colours and a set of other criteria. The results showed that white is the most widespread colour for this type of buildings. White seems to be strategic for enhancing complex and irregular forms and as a background for light projections, especially when the building needs to be highlighted in the context. Multi-coloured surfaces seem to be preferred in temporary installations as well as in suburban or rural contexts. In general, the expected lifespan of these buildings and of their materials seems to be very important for the colour choice. This initial study is dedicated to architectural designers interested in the use of textile materials for the building envelope.

Author Biography

Alessandro Premier, School of Architecture and Planning, Creative Arts and Industries, The University of Auckland, New Zealand

Alessandro Premier - Architect, PhD in Technology of Architecture, is Senior Lecturer in Architectural Technology and Sustainable Design at the School of Architecture and Planning of the University of Auckland (NZ). He carries out research and experimentations in the field of advanced technologies for the architectural envelope.


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How to Cite
Premier, A. (2020) “Colour design of textile architectural envelopes: an initial study”, Cultura e Scienza del Colore - Color Culture and Science, 12(01), pp. 25-31. doi: 10.23738/CCSJ.120103.