On the 50th anniversary of the Futuro House, a great commentary from Phineas Harper about pre-fab architecture and where it could take us in Dezeen.
Three years ago a Port Alfred / Eastern Cape icon disappeared, only to reappear in London, UK 18 months later.
The “Futuro House” previously located at 22 High Street, Port Alfred, was bought by myself, UK artist Craig Barnes whilst on holiday visiting family in the area.
Now restored and named Futuro 22, I want to write a book about this amazing house’s history and is looking for locals to help him tell it’s story.
Having first seen the house when he was 3 years old, I became concerned in 2013 that workers knocking down an adjacent garage were going to sledgehammer the UFO house.
Stood on the same plot for for 40 years, it was showing its age and I wanted to ensure it wasn’t going to be destroyed. So I made contact with the then owner Art Du Randt to find out his intentions for the “spaceship”.
Du Randt wanted to keep the house but he acknowledged the house would need extensive work to made habitable again. It was so bad one set of tenants had taken the front door to the dump when they became unhinged.
I persuaded Du Randt to sell it, and then began the unexpected holiday task of taking the house to pieces over five long days, helped by local Herman Breetze.
Initially hoped to restore the deconstructed house in South Africa, the huge scale of the job required dawned on me, and so I shipped it back to the UK.
The restoration work was featured in the popular TV program George Clarke’s Amazing Spaces. In the space of 18 months the house was restored and displayed to the public on a central London rooftop at Matt’s Gallery. The public can now visit it at the college Central Saint Martins, where I once studied.
I am now beginning to trace the full history and stories behind the “spaceship house” that lived in Port Alfred for 30+ years.
I hope to compile any memories, anecdotes, photos, videos or other archive material into a publication to celebrate Futuro 22 in advance of it’s 45th birthday.
I will be visiting South Africa again in the coming weeks, and wants to have coffee with anyone who knows about this local landmark! Contributors will receive a book when it is published and a credit.
I can be contacted at email@example.com or on WhatsApp at +447775532291.
I would gladly welcome any Kowie locals to pop in and say hi if they are in London anytime soon!
REVOLVER II Part Two: Traverse
Bronwen Buckeridge, Lucia Nogueira and Joëlle Tuerlinckx
with site-specific interventions by Craig Barnes, James Coleman, Peter Liversidge and X Marks the Bökship
Exhibition: 15 October to 9 November 2014
Opening hours: 12-6pm, Wednesday to Sunday
A curatorial collaboration by Robin Klassnik & Michael Newman
*Traverse: to pour over, to extend across, crossing borders to make equations, to lay different forms of knowledge across, above and below each other, a textile or lattice which shows and protects.
REVOLVER II is a fast paced 3-part exhibition that investigates the manifestation of knowledge in relation to artists who work with or reference text and publishing.
Artists participating in REVOLVER II are Jaki Irvine, Joëlle Tuerlinckx, Danh Võ, Deirdre O’Dwyer, Bronwen Buckeridge, Patrick Goddard, and Lizzie Hughes. The three parts are brought together with four site-specific interventions running from September–December by Peter Liversidge, Craig Barnes, James Coleman, Lucia Nogueira and X Marks the Bökship.
All selected works over the series combine to create a dialogue exploring the conditions in which a concept or object can manifest as knowledge within the human mind and what constitutes as uncertainty or ‘unknowing’.
Part One: Impart
10 September – 5 October
Part Three: Perform
19 November–14 December 2014
Sunday 14 December 2014
To mark the close of REVOLVER II we will host a free public event with Jaki Irvine. Details to follow.
Matt’s Gallery, 42-44 Copperfield Road, London, E3 4RR
Of late I’ve been consumed with restoring my 1972 built Futuro house. Intentions are for a full programme of events to run concurrently to being somewhere for folk to lay their giddy heads. I am looking for locations to take the Futuro house to so if you have any ideas regarding this please get in touch. More information about the Futuro can be found at www.futurohouse.co.uk
Two house plants for auction on eBay (2014)