The home is neither innocent nor neutral. A speculative instrument appropriated by architects, politicians, and home-owners alike, the domestic interior is a space that can be deployed to inflect patterns of consumption and habits of dwelling, making the the developer catalog of drawings, images, financial analyses, and slogans potential proxies for alternative forms of life. These 138 MODEL HOMES offer an alternative catalog, constituting the protocols for a new suburb in which to inscribe more varied habits of private and public life. In the catalog, the typological indifference to style allows for each model to produce new structures of cohabitation. Their planometric permutations belong to another category of domestic model—characterized by minimalisms and excesses, exotic layouts and redundancies. How can the simple elimination of the hallway undermine the maintenance of privacy? Does the removal of the private kitchen from the home open up spaces of collective use and negotiation? How do the redundancies of rooms and domestic infrastructures enable more collective forms of life within the home? Can the sharing of domestic space challenge conditions of property, access, stewardship, and ownership? These unfamiliar re-arrangements of domestic space allow for homes with or without kinship structures, making room for more social forms, territorial postures, and rituals of occupation.
138 MODEL HOMES is part of the the ‘Architectures by Proxy’ exhibition of the 2017-2018 Willard A. Oberdick Fellow at Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning at the University of Michigan, Brittany Utting in collaboration with Daniel Jacobs.
Photography by Yojairo Lomeli.