Emergent Design (Tom Wiscombe)

Micro-Multiple House, Los Angeles, 2001

With Micro-Multiple House, Tom Wiscombe replaces the concept of the house, whose representation always conveys an idea of scale and unity, with that of a constantly changing place of multiple characteristics, a station and a place of transit. The construction system is made up of a network of flexible interconnecting steel bands. The 4-meter wide steel bands are adapted to the maximum dimensions of delivery trucks or shipping containers: as they bend or twist, they channel or redirect the movement of bodies, vehicles and light. Planned for Los Angeles, the house looks like one continuous living room, as if it were the result of flexible and opportunistic processes. It simultaneously presents the features of interior and exterior, urban and suburban, geographic and technological. This exchange elicits unexpected spatial experiences: crossing a subterranean lake to reach the garage, for example, or picnicking in an interior garden, glimpsing the breakdown of the reflections of water shimmering on video screens, or taking the infinite meandering paths that lead from the house to the office, without ever stepping outside.

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