Washing machines sit idle most of the time. Homes offer views that mostly go unnoticed. At the same time, housing foreclosures are on the rise and ready-made jobs are not easy to find. Inspired by the service-oriented mentality of New York, Open house by Droog in collaboration with Diller Scofidio + Renfro is a movement in which suburban homeowners supplement their income and develop a new vocation by offering home-made services and facilities to the public.
Open house encourages self-inventiveness, offers ideas, and proposes new models for suburban housing, striking a new balance between the private and public realm. Starting with an economic argument for the struggling middle class, the proposal also addresses the challenges posed by urban sprawl and single–owner consumption. The new residential marketplace not only brings more capital and density to the neighborhood, it also increases social cohesion through service exchange.
Open house took place as a one-day event on Saturday, April 23rd, 2011. The event was kicked-off with a symposium at Studio-X New York introduced and moderated by Mark Wasiuta of Columbia University, followed by a bus trip to Levittown, where visitors could view and participate in nine house installations in the neighborhood, designed and executed by architects, designers and artists in collaboration with the homeowners. One of the installations showcased concepts for future open houses, with proposals for new housing configurations and regulatory modifications.
Symposium, Studio-X New York
The symposium at Studio-X was introduced and moderated by Mark Wasiuta (Columbia University), and featured presentations by Renny Ramakers (co-founder and director of Droog), Charles Renfro (project lead designer and partner at Diller Scofidio + Renfro), Heleen Mees (author on New York service economy), Roo Rogers (co-author of ‘What’s mine is yours’) and Mary Ellen Carroll (artist).
House installations, Levittown
Buses took visitors to Levittown, where they could view and participate in nine house installations in the neighborhood. Lunch was provided on the bus. Find a map of the event here
Services were available, and over $2500 was raised by the homeowners.
Director: Renny Ramakers
Content & project manager: Agata Jaworska
Interns: Daniela Dossi, Rachel Harding, Katrin Murbach, Libby Scarlett
Lead designers: Diller Scofidio + Renfro (Charles Renfro & David Allin)
Design team: EFGH (Hayley Eber & Frank Gesualdi), Claudia Linders, Frans Twisk
House installations: Alex Schweder La with Jessica Rivera and Adam Bandler, Austin + Mergold with Spencer Lapp, Claudia Linders, EFGH (Hayley Eber & Frank Gesualdi) with Irina Chernyakova, Fake Industries Architectural Agonism (Urtzi Grau & Cristina Goberna), Freecell (Lauren Crahan & John Hartmann), Janette Kim and Erik Carver with Gabriel Fries-Briggs, L.E.FT (Makram El Kadi & Ziad Jamaleddine), The Living (David Benjamin & Soo-in Yang) and Livia Corona
Consultants: Reinhold Martin, Heleen Mees, Mark Wasiuta
Graphic design: Droog (Simon Phillipson)
Website: Frans Twisk
Photography: Naho Kubota
Videography: Donna Pallotta
Symposium partner: Studio-X New York, GSAPP, Columbia University
Part of the Global Network Initiative of the Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation, Columbia University www.arch.columbia.edu/studiox
Thank you to the homeowners: Jose & Carina Barsallo, Phyllis Dalton, Polly Dwyer, Jim Hudak, Dawn Occhiogrosso, Rich & Lisa Santer, Anita Thompson, Ann Torcivia (coordinator), Lisa & Leo Vanderberg
Thank you to the service providers for sharing insights: Brian Mestre Dog Walking, Citymeals-on-Wheels, delivery.com, Dr. Sofa, Extreme Achievers Team, God’s Love We Deliver, InterExchange, Intuitive Readings with Derek Calibre, Joshua the Psychic, Kelima K, My Image Expert, North American Investigations, Inc., NY Wedding Dance, Paws In Chelsea, Relaxation Suite, SanaVita, Sunny Bates Associates, The Image Circle, The Luv Coach, Train Daly, Unique Chic