From social to commercial…


In 1927 Le Corbusier photographs Villa Stein-de Monzie with is Voisin automobile in a clear analogy of the house has a machine. The car is serving the purpose of the concept:  house is a machine for living.

In 1962 Alison Smithson became fascinated by citroen DS 19. She was fascinated by the car´s curved body panels and explicit joints – an object for the masses designed by unknown artists. The car represented freedom and a new aesthetics. Alison wrote about how “Caravans are the nearest to an expendable architecture that the market has to offer…”(1) – the caravan was an object, non permanent, mobile.  In the same year A+P design the House of the future which in retrospective seems pretty much inspired on its curvy shapes , explicit joints and this caravan idea of “everything in its right place” but, above all, expendable. The car parked outside their country house in Fonthill testifies their fascination for the mass consumption machine. Alison dreamed on the perfectly fitted expendable home.

In 2004 Wolkswagen campaign chooses to photograph its new models using “archistar” buildings has background like OMA Seatle Public Library. The building creates a contemporary atmosphere that is supposed to represent the same spirit of the car.

What story is told by the pictures then?

1. the car is an object used to represent the house concept;

2. the car represents mass production that the house wishes to be;

3. the car is an object and so is the building, they are both mass consumed and serving trends.

(1)Colomina, Beatriz: Domesticity at war; MIT press.

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