File under beautiful. In the wonderful tradition of Howard Finster, there's Grandma Prisbrey. I had forgotten about her beer bottle village until I rediscovered this ironic cathedral in an LA Times article this morning.
FOLK ART: In 1956, Tressa “Grandma” Prisbrey began constructing the buildings, scouring a local dump for the bottles, beer cans and other tossed-out items to fashion into walls and sidewalks.
(Los Angeles Times)
November 23, 2008
i've posted before on my fascination with micro-housing. it stands against excess. it's quaint and comforting. safe. it's cool. minimalist and distilled. womb-like. every small house presents a good design problem. it eschews the tendency to amass possessions. a prophetic voice against "bigger-is-better" consumerist bent in me and for that reason, it also interests me as a follower of Christ. as an artist, these lilliputian sheds interest me as potential statements of beauty. and the spiritual introvert in me loves daydreaming about the monastic possibilities. i've dreamed of an art space / cell for years that would be like this. possibly something like the art silos in downtown san antonio.
i hadn't noticed until now, but the new york times has been covering this beat with regularity: today they published a story by steven kurutz about a tiny house built on the back of a pickup truck. one year earlier they published this about "high-style sheds". And back in February, Bethany Lyttle wrote "Think Small" — funny, it's a small headline which stands juxtaposed against the NYT "GREAT HOMES" section header (see photo, left). Lyttle also narrated a wonderful companion slide show where she shows the rural getaway of one Mr. Adams, a lawyer in San Francisco. Her narration says something to the effect that, "being in a small space makes the land seem greater," and she continues with this small profundity:
"the smaller the footprint of the house, the greater the footprint of the land"
these photos bear witness to that little truth. so maybe one day when my lovely overcrowded nest thins out a bit. in the meantime, i'll enjoy daydreaming.
all of these photos above are copyright the New York Times,
taken by Peter DaSilva, Michael Falco, Heidi Schumann, Alchemy
Architects, John Friedman, and Jay Shafer for Tumbleweed Tiny Homes.
you may remember my post last year about the m-ch micro compact home, a 2.6 meter cube intended for one or two inhabitants (it's now on display at moma until mid-october). i've always been intrigued by well-designed, compact living spaces (my son and my mom both tell me they share the same facscination). equally interesting to me are are treehouses and teardrop trailers, such as the one pictured on the left. homes and mobile homes like these are, in my mind, testaments to good space allocation, a (relatively) conservative use of resources, and a rather romantic way to bunk down for the night. i've enjoyed reading about building one's own teardrop trailer, and if i were more handy with tools i'd certainly have it on my list of things to do.
now front architects in poznań, poland (north of wrocław and west of warszawa) have designed the billboard-inspired single hauz:
"…a kind of manifest, proposal of a house/shelter for a Western Worlder. The "basic unit of society", as marriage is called, is no longer the only model of life. As a detached single occupant house unit, Single Hauz fills a kind of a void in the field of housing proposal for so called "singles"…"
in any case, it's a joy to look at and to ponder a month or even a week living inside. enjoy their mockups:
the reverend jennifer baskerville-burrows is a chaplain at syracuse university and rector at grace episcopal church. she is a localvore and writes the beautiful food blogcookin' in the 'cuse, and was one of the first friends to greet me at the recent Trinity Wall Street consultancy. today Jennifer and her community garden was on MSNBC:
It came in today! My advance copy of Jesus for President, the new Shane Claiborne + Chris Haw book for which I contributed 40 or so watercolor illustrations; designed by my friends Holly and Ryan over at SharpSeven. I'm really geeking out over how cool it turned out, thumbing through it like a little kid. It's cool to finally see the other contributors' work (several artists, photographers) and see how the whole thing comes together.
Please consider buying a copy.
It's four-color throughout, but somehow the price is less than $12 over at the big box place. I'm sure VivaBooks will sell it as well.
Here's an illustration I did, which you can see closer when you buy the book:
file under: filet'o'fish'o'war
Here's designer Ryan hard at work with his other love. This is fresh footage BTW: