Many individuals in society (particularly western) require and want a space, which they can call their own. This idea is primarily evident in the great old American Dream, which was the ultimate goal in life of living in and owning a home. This idealized lifestyle ultimately began to diminish in its popularity as societal trends and conditions have changed. In today’s society, it is evident that there has been increase in singular living conditions due to many different factors. Some of which include the shift in priorities, as more individuals are becoming career driven and less concerned about childbirth and parenthood. The rising cost of living in many western countries also can be attributed to the increase in single housed homes as it is becoming more expensive to raise children. It was forecasted and predicted in our futures scenario that in 2050, individual living will primarily become the dominant lifestyle chosen by individuals. This was forecasted in the futures scenario due to the factors that indicated that individual living is increasing in the current day. After further research into the topic of individualized living and single housed homes it became prevalent that there were various designers which were interested in small living spaces and creating spaces for individuals rather than building in large spaces for a large amount of people.
There is one specific design and designer, which stood out among the sea of others mainly due to the geographical location of both the designers origins and the single house itself. Australian designer, Nicholas Gurney designed a single person household, which measured to be 27 square meters in total. The apartment utilizes folding and hidden compartments to house a fully functional kitchen, lounge room, bedroom, bathroom and also a study area all in a small confined space. Sliding doors featuring primary painted splash backs reveal and transform into new areas and spaces. What is most interesting about this design and its designer though is its geographical context. Australia is a large country, which hasn’t had issues with housing such dense population as of yet. In fact, Australia is the only western country in the world, which has housing bigger than the United States. The designer interestingly identifies the issues which society will be faced in the future. Australia’s population continues to soar with large populations consolidating in cities and this trend will more than likely continue for the nation as residents primarily live close to the CBD for resources and job opportunities.
There has also been rapid advancements in technology and mobile technologies which led to our futures scenario also involving the individual house to be a smart house. This meant that apartments will always be connected to wireless networks and can be operated through a centralized operating system. Teatum, author of ‘The Future House is Here’ also had similar experiences and visions of the future house. Teatum describes his exploration of a prototype of the future house, ‘The Smart App-artment’. Each element of the house is controlled and monitored by a centralized operating system, the ipad. Teamtum goes onto describe that every object in the household is assigned an IP address and is controlled by the ipad. (Teatum, 2013)
Both of these designs interestingly bare striking similarities to the futures scenario, which my group had envisioned and forecasted, based on our secondary research and research based opinions. One showcases singular living conditions whilst the other showcases how the advancements of technology have integrated with the future house to become integrated.
Teatum, Tom 2013. ‘The future house is here’, Architectural Review, Vol. 234, Issue 1399
Friedlander, David 2014. ‘Small Space Wizard of Oz’, Life Edited, 18/10/2014