July 20—October 20, 2008
Home Delivery: Fabricating the Modern Dwelling comprises a selective survey of prefabrication in architecture (represented by the Timeline) and a building project of contemporary prefabricated homes on the Museum's west lot (as chronicled in the Installation Journal Archive).
The Timeline begins in the opening decades of the nineteenth century, when factory-produced buildings and building components were integral to the development of the American heartland and to the settling of far-flung colonies by Britain and France. From there, the Timeline spans almost two hundred years of architectural history, focusing on the European and American avant-gardes of the 1920s and 1930s, movements whose explorations have returned to the forefront in every new dialogue about architecture's relationship with serial production: in the golden decade after World War II, with its economic prosperity and baby boom and corresponding housing shortage; in the 1960s, with the introduction of new materials; and again in the past decade, as the computer has dramatically changed the conditions of production.
The Installation Journal Archive is a record of the weekly journal postings by the architects of the five contemporary prefabricated houses erected on the lot to the west of the Museum. The Installation Journal offers a "behind the scenes" look into the entire process of creating and erecting prefabricated architecture. The firms and individuals chosen to participate contributed weekly progress updates, beginning several months in advance of the exhibition, demonstrating how the processes of design, fabrication, shipping, and assembly unfolded to create five finished homes in time for the exhibition's public opening. The architects of each of the five houses were assigned a day of the week: KieranTimberlake Associates of Philadelphia (Mondays); Jeremy Edmiston and Douglas Gauthier of New York (Tuesdays); Oskar Leo Kaufmann and Albert Rüf of Dornbirn, Austria (Wednesdays); Massachusetts Institute of Technology School of Architecture and Planning / Associate Professor Lawrence Sass (Thursdays); and Richard Horden, Horden Cherry Lee Architects in London and Lydia Haack and John Höpfner of Haack + Höpfner Architects in Munich (Fridays). In addition, members of the MoMA curatorial team submitted commentary each Saturday.
Home Delivery: Fabricating the Modern Dwelling offers the most thorough examination of the historical and contemporary significance of factory-produced architecture to date. With increasing concern about such issues as sustainability and the swelling global population, prefabrication has taken center stage as a prime solution to a host of pressing needs. The viability of prefabricated structures has long served as a central precept in modern architecture, and it continues to spur imaginative design and the development of innovative manufacturing processes. The relationship between the drawing board and the finished product has never been more dynamic, but the potential of prefabrication has not yet come to full fruition. Home Delivery examines this phenomenon through historical documents, full-scale reassemblies, and films that trace the roots of prefabrication in the work of individual architects like Frank Lloyd Wright, Jean Prouvé, and Richard Rogers and corporations such as Lustron, and in the imaginative systems of other influential figures, including Thomas Edison and R. Buckminster Fuller. The Web site's Timeline features a selective survey of historical projects.
The exhibition also features five contemporary prefabricated houses constructed in the outdoor space to the west of the main Museum building, continuing MoMA's rich history of presenting full-scale architectural projects. Five individuals and architecture firms have been given the unprecedented opportunity to deploy both commercially viable domestic creations and entirely new, speculative prototypes. The delivery and assembly of these projects functioned as a real-time urban event, which was visible to the general public from the city streets beginning May 22, 2008, when the first house arrived for assembly. The Installation Journal Archive is dedicated to the documentation of the design, fabrication, and assembly process of these specially commissioned projects.
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Web Site Credits
Barry Bergdoll, Philip Johnson Chief Curator, Department of Architecture and Design
Peter Christensen, Curatorial Assistant, Department of Architecture and Design
Andrea Lipps, Research Assistant, Department of Architecture and Design
Web Site Design and Development
Tsia Carson, Information Design
Petter Ringbom, Art Direction
Maureen Costello, Project Management
Matthew Kosoy, Developer
Bryan Winters, Developer
Ben Haynes, Flash Developer
Dan Arbello, Graphic Design
David Maron, Graphic Design
Allegra Burnette, Creative Director, Digital Media
David Hart, Associate Media Producer, Information Technology
Jason Persse, Associate Editor, Campaign Communications
The exhibition is the fifth in a series of five exhibitions made possible by The Lily Auchincloss Fund for Contemporary Architecture and is also generously supported by The Rockefeller Foundation and by Jerry I. Speyer and Katherine G. Farley.
Additional funding is provided by David Teiger, The Winston Foundation, Inc., and the Foundation for the Advancement of Architectural Thought.
Media sponsorship is provided by Metropolitan Home Magazine.
PREFABRICATION ON FILM: Produced by Velocity Filmworks. Directed by Joey Forsyte. Edited by Jeremy Medoff. Additional editing by Chen Yerushalmi
Excerpt from PREFABRICATION ON FILM: 1919-1930
Courtesy The National Archives
Excerpt from PREFABRICATION ON FILM: 1941-1954
Courtesy The National Archives
Excerpt from PREFABRICATION ON FILM: 1956-1966
Courtesy The National Archives and Prelinger Archives
Excerpt from PREFABRICATION ON FILM: 1967-1974
Courtesy Taisei Corporation, Tokyo, Japan
Excerpt from PREFABRICATION ON FILM: 2000-Present
Courtesy Atelier TEKUTO and the Institute for Regional Education
Excerpt from PREFABRICATION IN COMPUTER ANIMATION: 2000-Present
Courtesy Anderson Anderson Architects, Autodesk, and BMW
Installation video sequences created with Panasonic Network Cameras.
Cameras and support courtesy of Panasonic USA (www.panasonic.com), with special thanks to:
Project produced by Velocity Filmworks
All photos and videos on the Journal Archive section of the Web site are copyright of the architects, unless otherwise noted.