In the 19th and 20th century Frank Lloyd Wright hinted at the biolgical with his organic houses - his attempts to make the seam between nature and house be transparent was one of the first example of biomimicry, the art of design inspired by nature. The building as art was expanded by the Bauhaus movement.
Art Nouveau as a school of design from around 1890 to 1910 that tried to reflect the curves, colors and shape of nature commensurate with the post Victorian era obsession with natural history and these were incorporated into contemporary designs of the era in nearly every field of art and design.
The Paris worlds fair of 1925 changed all that and rejected the subtle curves and leaf-shapes inherited from nature for the forceful brutalist approach of glass, concrete and steel as we entered machine age of straight angular lines and function followed form and that for was the arrogance of mans temporary victory over nature. Smog and skyscrapers are synonymous however and this age is giving way.
25 years past the computer and network revolution there is a design movement that once again looks at nature but in greater depth and with more reverence of the 3.8 billion year old proven designs nature ended up grading out for us via evolution. In cars, buildings, waterworks, medicine and software it's always a better idea to work with nature than to work against its principles. Airplanes wings copy bird wings. Velcro came from weeds. Shoes made like bone. Apartment towers grow food. Mercedes built a car based on a tropical fish; sprayable liquid skin based on: these are all examples or biomimic design - design that mimics biology - or "biomimicry".