Space Age Design Relaunches – Mansion Global

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Built by architects John Lautner and others in the 1950s and 1960s, whether called the Space Age or the Atomic Age, the houses represent a new wave of modern architecture inspired by space exploration and futuristic ideas. ..

In the mid-20th century, astronauts were as fascinating as movie stars, The Jetsons Movies like 2001: A Space Odyssey Invented a world with houses that resemble planets and spaceships. Now that space travel for amateurs is becoming a reality, we can see architects and designers drawing inspiration from new booms and advances in materials and technology.

“Design evolves in the context of culture,” says Bidi Shashinha, Associate Director of Zaha Hadid Architects in London. “Architectural movements influence each other. Space Age design was influenced by popular culture and technology that enables plastic-injected furniture, etc. Nuclear Age architecture is what protons and neutrons are. It was based on the understanding that it was a component of something bigger, which is the same as getting a building block and summing up more than the individual components. “


These trends are being considered ahead of the curve, and Shinha says the fluid and energetic designs that are still associated with today’s architectural styles continue to be valued.

Technological improvements have made it easier to build futuristic architectures. Space Family You don’t live in a spaceship like The Jetsons, but modern homes use elements of the old home, such as curved walls, floor-to-ceiling glass, and smart home controls like science fiction. doing.

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“Popular culture always influences architecture,” says Michele Grace Hottel, founder of Michele Grace Hottel Architects in La Mesa, California. “A new interest in space, technology and futurism is about designing in the space where people live. Open spaces, connections to natural places, and the vast expanse of glass resonate with today’s people. It is an element of architecture in the space era. “

In 1960, John Lautner’s “Kemosphere” house in Los Angeles was an octagonal dwelling on a concrete pillar and was considered a microcosm of modern design. Similarly, his 1968 “Elrod House” in Palm Springs features a UFO-like circular concrete canopy above the living room and curved glass walls. In both examples, Lautner incorporated natural elements of the site into his design, such as the large rocks that are part of the interior of the El Rod House.

“Space Age architecture was part of the post-war modernist phase of American optimism in the 1950s and 1960s,” said Carlos Priotuzette in Coral Gables, Florida, and the Space Age in the 1950s. Says Jacqueline Gonzales Touzette, who lives in the house of. Both are architects and principals of Touzet Studio, who were influenced by the times. “Unlike Europe, where the focus was on post-war reconstruction, American architects were part of a” possible “moment based on the economic boom and excitement for new technologies. “

The spirit of the 1950s and 1960s is all about the future, leaving the past and the war, says Touzet. It sounded like an illusion at the time, but civilian space travel was part of an ideal future. From Jeff Bezos and Richard Branson to William Shatner and Michael Strahan, millionaires and celebrities have shown that non-astronauts can travel in space, and now they are rejuvenating into space beyond the Earth. Experts say that the transformed interest may stimulate a new interest in future architecture.

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“Everything related to space age design, clean lines, holistic design, technology, modern materials, pop culture, etc., remains relevant today,” says Shinha. “These factors continue and evolve. For example, 3D printing and new material experiments are similar to injection molding and plastic furniture experiments in the 1960s.”

Some elements of residential modernist architecture in the 1950s and 1960s are in good agreement with today’s glass walls, indoor and outdoor connections, and abundant open space ratings.

“We are particularly attracted to playful modernism, as are the baby boomer clients who grew up in the 1950s and 1960s,” says Touzet. “At that time, technology was seen as the way to a better life. That attitude is still strong today.”

Space Age design features, such as floating stairs and overhanging cantilever to create shade, were “amazing feats of engineering and ingenuity,” says Touzet. Today’s architects are embracing these cutting-edge styles and adapting them to new homes.


New space era

The residential architecture of the well-known company Zaha Hadid Architects does not strictly refer to space age design, but shares futuristic aesthetics along with some of the modernist principles of the 1950s.

“For the 1000 Museum condos in Miami and the 520 West 28th St. condos in New York, we designed the exterior and interior with fluid, malleable lines that flow throughout the building,” says Sinha.

Also by Zaha Hadid, the Miami 1000 Museum condo has an outdoor space and a curved exterior that resembles the early imagination of a spacecraft.

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Both buildings have an outdoor space and a curved exterior that resembles the early imagination of a spacecraft. The private residence designed by Zaha Hadid Architects in the Capital Hill district of Moscow Star Wars movie.

A private residence designed by Zaha Hadid Architects in the Capital Hill district of Moscow.

Courtesy of Zaha Hadid Architects

An important element of modern architecture and Zaha Hadid’s aesthetics is the design of biological forms that inform the dwelling structure, which resembles Lautner’s curved dwellings, using the organic forms found in nature.

Designed by Touzet Studio in Miami in 2019, the house features a floating roof reminiscent of Lautner’s work.

Designed by Touzet Studio in 2012, the Coral Gables home has a floating roof, clerestry windows, terrazo floors, and operable glass walls on the back of the house.

Photo by Robin Hill, courtesy of Touzet Studio

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“La Escondida’s homes have an organic composition that is open to vines and trees, and are raised to catch breeze and ventilation,” Tusette said of Miami’s residence. I’m talking. “The house has floor-to-ceiling glass walls, much like many of the 1950s and 1960s Space Age designs.”

Similarly, the Coral Gables home, designed by Touzet Studio in 2012, has a floating roof, windows, terrazzo floors, and operable glass walls on the back of the house.

Another Touzet Studio custom home in Miami appears as a set of open boxes floating above an adjacent waterway.

Designed by Touzet Studio in 2012, the Coral Gables home has a floating roof, clerestry windows, terrazo floors, and operable glass walls on the back of the house.

Photo by Robin Hill, courtesy of Touzet Studio

Technology takes the Space Age to another level

Space-age designs of the 1950s and 1960s included floor-to-ceiling glass spreads, but technologies available today allow these walls to be easily opened for indoor and outdoor connectivity. It means that it can be enhanced.

“Now we can use the remote control to control the large walls of glass, and we also have better weather resistance,” says Hottel. “But some materials in Space Age homes, such as pond-in-place concrete, are difficult to use to meet today’s building codes.”

Instead of using concrete or plastic, architects use 3D printing and some prefabricated elements to achieve a seamless, smooth look, says Shinha. Prefabs can be a cheaper construction method and usually shorten the construction period.

The exterior of the condo at 520 West 28th St. in New York was designed with fluid, adaptable lines that flow throughout the building.

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“Today, with the risks of climate change and floods, we need to do more with less effort,” says Touzet. “Concrete is one of the most carbon-rich building materials, so we use other materials to reuse it instead.”

Mixing glass or seawater with concrete can reduce both the amount of concrete used and the carbon needed to make it, says Touzet.

“Space Age architecture is expensive to build and can require more land for some of the large and vast spaces,” says Hottel.

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Architectural styles come and go, but performance and health concerns remain here, says Touzet.

“The connection to the site, nature, indoor and outdoor life was part of the first Space Age architecture and is still important today,” says Touzet. “The difference is that people aren’t very interested in grumpy materials that don’t last long. Now we have elastic, long-lasting homes and modern, futuristic styles that provide protection from the elements. I’m looking for. “

Space Age style homes can be found all over the world, but are more common in Southern California, Arizona, and Florida regions that incorporate futuristic designs.

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“There are some good places for space-age architecture, such as the lunar surface and desert terrain that looks like you’re on another planet,” says Hottel.

When the late comedian Bob Hope first saw the design of his home in Palm Springs in 1969, he was reportedly saying, “At least when you come down from Mars, you’ll know where to go.” I am.

The house, which appears to float above the water and the earth on the glass wall of the remote control, embodies the fun and futuristic sensations of a space age style house.

“The idea of ​​space age design was innovative, embodying the spirit of conquering new things,” says Shinha. “Since then, technology has been elucidated in many ways, but its spirit remains important.”

This article was first published in the Spring 2022 issue of Mansion Global Experience Luxury.

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