About Open House
Open House: Architecture and Technology for Intelligent Living envisions the house of the future as a place for new spatial experiences, new systems of sustainability and new sensory enhancements. It encourages creative individuals to imagine how we will live in the future.
The traveling exhibition was organized by the Vitra Design Museum in collaboration with Art Center College of Design, and opened in Essen, Germany, in August 2006. It includes a multi-faceted research initiative, incorporating Art Center research studios, as well as a series of public programs.
What sets Open House apart from other investigations of “smart” domestic technologies is the participation of architects and designers in a dialogue about the relationship of technology and architecture. From architects around the world, Art Center and the Vitra Design Museum commissioned ten visions of future dwellings. The core of Open House is the presentation in various media (models, drawings, and computer animations) of these projects, created by emerging architects and designers from the United States, Europe, Australia, Asia and Mexico. Organized into four thematic sections, each urging the visitor to “connect,” the projects explore new schemes for city living, new solutions to urban density, new relationships between buildings and their environment, new sensory enhancements, and new responses to the needs of changing demographics and the impact of increasing life-expectancy. The exhibition also features a timeline that tracks past visions of “houses of the future,” such as Buckminster Fuller’s Dymaxion House, Alison and Peter Smithson’s House of the Future, Matti Suuronen’s Futuro House and Robert Whittier’s Monsanto House.
In order to extend the dialogue initiated by “Open House,” a public forum space is included within the installation, for both scheduled public programs and informal discussions. Also featured in this space is work from the educational project “Inside Out,” an exploration by Art Center students of domestic life. “HouseSwarming,” a site-specific environmental installation by Infranatural, commissioned by Art Center, greets visitors at the entrance to the South Campus.