Friday, 11 July 2008

A Pair of Flying Slippers

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Phil Patton reviews the Buckminster Fuller exhibition at the Whitney: "'An exhibition is a verb,' writes Whitney museum director Adam Weinberg bravely, in his introduction to the catalog of the museum's Buckminster Fuller show, Starting with the Universe.

He is echoing Fuller's own famous phrase 'I seem to be a verb.' But in fact, a museum show is necessarily more like an arrangement of nouns. And this one includes nouns like drawings, photographs, and models, with a few verbs of video of Fuller talking.

'His vision is difficult to approximate and present, much less encompass in an exhibition,'"

When people think of Geodesic Homes, they think of the Whole-Earth-Catalog Natural-Spaces style hybrid old-tech with awkward wood-strut and pentagonal panels that leak, rot and escalate the construction costs, bad acoustics and frustrated angry contractors.

But this was not, by a long shot, what Bucky Fuller meant.

Far from it. Bucky meant for us to live in hard-science efficiently and cheaply engineered and prefabricated self-contained domicile LIVINGRY, air-delivered to any location you like, plugged into the ground like a tree (anchored by the septic, the floors suspended around the utilities mast like a hoop-dress) and the whole open-concept thing elegantly enclosed in a ventable Geodesic Greenhouse to conserve energy and 'valve' the outside elements, creating a human-friendly year-round semi-outdoor experience he called "Living in a Garden".

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