It began with respect for the bee.
Our fascination with the industrious bug can be traced back to the earliest beginnings of civilization. The Sumerians kept bees over 5,000 years ago, followed by the Egyptians. Both utilized honey for its sustenance and symbolism. Honey was worshiped in scriptures and described as a symbol of love in poetry.
Pablo Neruda, on the honeycomb:
Let the wax raise/green statues, let the honey/drip in infinite tongues, let the ocean be a big comb/and the Earth a tunic of flowers, let the World
be a cascade, magnificent hair, unceasing/growth of Beedom.
Honeycombs also found their way into architecture and design: As a marvel of engineering, the form of the hexagon allows for the greatest strength from the least material and labor. Throughout Asia and the Middle East it was also used universally as a religious motif.
Trompe l'oeil hexagons are used in a basket weave, below.
And a pavement in Pompeii:
The hexagon was at the heart of Jewish, Muslim, Hindu, and Buddhist iconography. Its ubiquitous patterns are seen in the both the sacred and the profane, from palaces to prayer rugs, as in this oriental rug from Eastern Anatolia, Asia Minor (modern Turkey), below.
Below, a modern approach that sits well with Mid-century style.
Geodesic domes, like the Buckminster Fuller creation below, may be in the plans for the future colonies on the moon.
A more recent remix of the Bucky dome below:
Hyundai concept car, below:
A look into the tower from the Montreal Expo of 1967:
The perfectly hexagonal jointed basalt columns of Fingal's Cave in Scottland:
A hexagon display constructed of repurposed cardboard boxes:
A conceptual school building as a honeycomb:
The Roxy Club by Brazilian architect Fred Mafra:
A view of the suburbs of Casablanca, Morocco via Google Maps, below: