Book Launch: “Comments on ‘Foreclosed’”
February 15, 2013
Foreclosed set itself up as more than just your typical museum exhibition. The show, which ran from February through August of last year, attempted to tackle one of the most urgent and admittedly bleak questions that face architects, policymakers, and the public today. This, of course, is the housing question, but it would be a mistake to simply collapse the intricate economic, social, and legislative nuances—to say nothing of the design issues—that necessarily follow discussion of the “American dream” and the challenges made to its enduring (and, it can be said, catastrophic) relevance.
The exhibition, which was organized by MoMA architecture curator Barry Bergdoll and Reinhold Martin, director of the Temple Hoyne Buell Center for the Study of American Architecture Columbia University, featured work from Jeanne Gang, MOS, WORKac, Visible Weather, and Zago Architecture. Together they formed a vast body of work—models, diagrams, research, and video—that realized five entirely new visions of suburbia. Each of these “study sites” were different manifestations of the exhibitions’s underlying “script,” The Buell Hypothesis and its provocative mantra: Change the dream and you change the city.
Several months on, Comments on Foreclosed attempts to not just offer a reading of Foreclosed, but also to, in Martin’s words, “inquire into what can and cannot be discussed in public.” The book collects media coverage of and responses to the project, in the form of reviews, blog posts, think pieces. In addition to this “archive” of data, the Buell Center will host further discussions and comments on the Comments on Foreclosed site, where Columbia students, faculty, and organizers, along withpublic participants, will further address the issues provoked by the show and beyond. The book launches this Monday, February 18, 6:30 PM at the Buell East Gallery at Columbia University. The event is open to all, so be there.