I would like to live here.
Visitors are few and usually bring gifts. There are no power lines. There's little traffic and no garage. There is no street appeal. A realtor couldn't find a "comp" on this place to save his soul. Nobody knows how much this place cost per square foot. There was no building inspector or code enforcer or building permit. No neighborhood association dictated the building materials, the proportions or acceptable colors. There's nothing of this place not needed.
There's nothing of this place not needed.
This is why I would like to live here.
When we live in a place where everything of it and in it is exactly what we want and truly need, this is Living Architecture.
And this is not Living Architecture.
This is Dead Architecture. And this America is not where I want to live.
Meaningless architecture based on the worst aspects of capitalistic consumptionism is mass produced and marketed to the masses in nauseous waves of amber sameness.
To be sure, the homes all have "street appeal". They are designed to include what everybody thinks they want and what everybody believes they need. Here, there is plenty of traffic and endless garages filled with cars and more often with junk.
The developer made money selling the lots. The builder made money selling the home. The buyer made money moving up to another bigger place and the realtor and the bank and the title company and the City all got a cut.
And everything of this place is not needed.
That's why I wish I could send America to The Monastery of The Miracle of Meaning.
But there is no magic monastery.
There is however, an incredible opportunity coming to America, a unique opportunity to discover the Miracle of Meaning.
America's Living Architecture.
You see, the American Dream as we know it has failed. It has failed for good reason. We the people are finally figuring out that we have enough stuff. We're not buying things to simply have things. We're waking up and not buying what we don't truly need. We're realizing that to live within our means is to experience meaningful living.
Sure, we're going to go through incredibly trying times, angry times, scary times. We will be afraid of what we think is darkness coming.
But it will pass.
And we'll be the better for it. We will wake up and discover what we really don't need. We will build wiser and our architecture will have meaning because everything of it will have purpose, will have poise, will have poetry.
"No! Try not. Do, or do not. There is no try."
When America crawls out of its ashes, we will build like we have never built before. We will build with what we find at hand. We will build as an integral part of nature. Our places will fit in and we will fit within them. We will build smaller and smarter and quieter. We will wrap our homes about us like a second skin for living in. We will build homes we can afford and we will afford ourselves with the gift of meaningful living.
At The Academy of Living Arts and Architecture, we're not trying to change the world.
There is no trying to change the world. We do change the world, one idea, one student, one home, one wonderful world at a time.