Manual of Biogenic House Sections

Manual of Biogenic House Sections

Manual of Biogenic House Sections

Manual of Biogenic House Sections

Manual of Biogenic House Sections

“The book features 55 highly detailed sectional perspectives and axonometric drawings of each house, based on techniques originated in the award-winning Manual of Section.”


Recognizing that buildings are a major contributor to global warming and the critical role of embodied versus operational carbon, the book focuses on houses built from materials that either sequester carbon (plants), use materials with very low embodied carbon (earth and stone) or reuse substantial amounts of existing materials. Organized by those materials (wood, bamboo, straw, hemp, cork, earth, brick, stone and re-use), and incorporating life cycle diagrams demonstrating how the raw material is processed into building components, the book shows how the unique properties of each material can transform the ways architects conceive the sections of houses. The house was selected as the vehicle for these investigations due to its scale, its role as a site of architectural experimentation, and its ubiquity. 

Building on the techniques of the Manual of Section, the book is comprised of newly generated cross-sectional drawings of fifty-five recent, modestly sized houses from around the world, making legible the tectonics and materials used in their construction. Each house is also shown through exploded axonometric, construction photographs and color photographs of the exterior and interior. Introductory essays set up the importance of embodied carbon, the role of vernacular plant-based construction and the problems of contemporary house construction. Drawing connections between the architecture of the house, environmental systems and material economies, the book seeks to change how we build now and for the future.


“Goal is to show how houses can be design and built today using material assembly systems that are either low carbon emitting materials, or are carbon sequestering renewable, plant-based materials.”


LTL Architects (Lewis.Tsurumaki.Lewis) is a design intensive architecture firm founded in 1997 by Paul Lewis, Marc Tsurumaki and David J. Lewis, located in New York City. Lewis.Tsurumaki.Lewis engages a diverse range of work, from large scale academic and cultural buildings to interiors and speculative research projects, and realizes inventive solutions that turn the very constraints of each project into the design trajectory, exploring opportunistic overlaps between space, program, form, budget and materials.

LTL has completed academic, institutional, residential and hospitality projects throughout the United States. LTL’s work has been recognized with many publications and awards, including the AIANY 2019 State Firm of the Year Award, the 2019 Interior Design Hall of Fame, the #3 Top Firm in Design from the Architect 50, a National Design Award, as well as multiple AIA design awards. The firm was featured in the U.S. Pavilion at the Venice Architecture Biennale and its work is in the permanent collections of the Museum of Modern Art, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art and the Carnegie Museum of Art. The principals are co-authors of four acclaimed books: Manual of Section (Princeton Architectural Press, 

2016), Intensities (Princeton Architectural Press, 2013), Opportunistic Architecture (Princeton Architectural Press, 2008), and Situation Normal…Pamphlet Architecture #21 (Princeton Architectural Press, 1998). The firm’s recent work includes the 14,500 SF adaptation of a tech repair shop into Poster House, the first Poster museum in the U.S; the design of Helen R. Walton Children’s Enrichment Center + HighQ Education Center, one of the healthiest early childhood education centers in the U.S.; the 23,800 SF renovation of The ContemporAry Austin – Jones Center, a contemporary art gallery in Austin, Texas; the 2,750 SF renovation of the Joseph D. Jamail Lecture Hall at Columbia University; and the 28,000 SF renovation of The Students' Building at Vassar College. LTL Architects, along with Perkins+Will, Thornton-Tomasetti and ME Engineers, completed the 160,000 SF transformation of Upson Hall at Cornell University. Notable past projects include NYU Steinhardt School, Brown Institute for Media Innovation at Columbia University, Claremont University Consortium, and Arthouse at the Jones Center. The firm’s principals are on the faculty at Princeton University, Columbia University, and Parsons School of Design.


San Francisco

31 Commercial Blvd. Suite F
Novato, CA 94949
t 1.415.883.3300
f 1.415.883.3309

Los Angeles

ORO LA Office
5520 Palos Verdes Blvd.
Torrance, CA 90505
t: 1.310.318.5186


180 Chemin Danis
Grenville PQ, J0V 1B0
Quebec, Canada
t 1.415.233.1944


2 Venture Dr.
#11-15 Vision Exchange
Singapore 608526
t 65.66.2206


Room 15E, Building 7, 
Ying Jun Nian Hua Garden,
Dan Zhu Tou, Shenhui Road, Buji, Longgang district,
Shenzhen, China 518114w
t 86.1372.4392.704

Buenos Aires

Juramento 3115
Buenos Aires C1428DOC
t 54.911.6861.2543

© 2023 ORO Editions. All Rights Reserved. Designed by Organ Creative

© 2021 ORO Editions.
All Rights Reserved. Designed by Organ Creative

© 2021 ORO Editions. All Rights Reserved. Designed by Organ Creative

© 2021 ORO Editions. All Rights Reserved. Designed by Organ Creative

© 2021 ORO Editions. All Rights Reserved. Designed by Organ Creative

Generic selectors
Exact matches only
Search in title
Search in content
Post Type Selectors