The changing needs of society informed by rapid technological, social and ecological changes have disturbed the foundation of permanence on which much of architecture was built. Traditional Western architecture is too solid, hard, and slow—presenting difficulties for it to adequately adapt to change and uncertainty. A reconceptualization of architecture is necessary, one not focused on the certainty of solutions or forms, but one patterned by the dynamic feedback of human agency and environmental forces. For architecture to adapt, and to adapt to unpredictable circumstances, requires that architecture accept uncertainty in its formulation and materialization. Embracing systems-based thinking, a conceptual model based on the complex systems of granular matter provides a unique approach to architecture’s material and immaterial structures. Architecture will then be critically poised at the edge of chaos, ready to reorganize and evolve towards a new fluid paradigm.