In their February 2009 issue, Dwell Magazine features an article about American House 08 by architect William Massie.
For Massie, creating this “transportable” house proved inspirational.
For over a decade, attaching his computer to a laser cutter, he learned how to draw intricate shapes—such as jigsaw patterns for wood paneling—and have the machine cut them out seamlessly. He then bought his own computer numerically controlled (CNC) milling machine, which could drill down into a material to create molds. He was thus able to redefine how standard materials such as concrete, wood, and even rubber were used. They no longer had to be flat or rectangular—they could become sculptural forms.
The prefab part isn't really intended to be practical here:
When the house is moved again, some interior surfaces, such as the plaster ceilings, will, in Massie’s words, “have to be sacrificed.” Redoing them, and reinstalling the floor, will cost about $20,000. The total transport cost, apart from any work to connect the house to the site, will be nearly $45,000. The cost of the house itself? $750,000.
size: ~2,500 sf
The house is listed on ebay. The starting bid was $480,000 and the current bid is up to $490,100.
Read the Dwell article for more details, then visit Massie's website for numerous pictures and a virtual tour.
Subtitle: Art object or machine for living in? Architect William Massie’s personal prefab project takes the mass out of mass customization to create a one-of-a-kind wonder.
Author: David Hay
Publication: Dwell Magazine
Length: 1,356 words
Date: February 2009
(Hat tip: Materialicious on December 22, 2008)