Between 1989 and 1991 former Walker Design Curator Mildred Friedman commissioned exhibitions from six different American architectural firms for a series entitled ARCHITECTURE TOMORROW. Her premise was simple but challenging: in a 2,300-square-foot gallery with a 13-foot ceiling, create an inexpensive exhibition that can be "knocked down" and packed up to travel to other institutions, such as the Power Plant in Toronto, The Museum of Modern Art in San Francisco, and the Wexner Center for the Arts in Columbus, Ohio. While some of the firms chose to exhibit models and sketches of their past architectural projects, others built entirely new installations. Three of these projects are featured here.
DOMESTIC ARRANGEMENTS: A LAB REPORT: TOD WILLIAMS/BILLIE TSIEN (December 3, 1989-February 11, 1990)
Tod Williams and Billie Tsien (both based in New York City) focused on the idea of an architecture for tomorrow, keeping in mind that "the house has always been a testing ground for architects." They created an exhibition of full-scale livable sections of a house, intending that the materials that went into the construction would be used at the end of the exhibition's tour in the building of a house.
TOURISMS: SUITCASE STUDIES: ELIZABETH DILLER/RICHARD SCOFIDIO (January 6-March 17, 1991)
Elizabeth Diller and Richard Scofidio (working collaboratively since 1979 and based on the East Coast) created an art installation around the idea of travel and the transitory experience of transporting your home wherever you go. Fifty Samsonite suitcases holding materials related to 50 tourist attractions in the United States were suspended from a giant plywood ceiling map of the country. The exhibition traveled from one museum to another in the same suitcases.
EDGE OF A CITY: STEVEN HOLL (April 21-June 23, 1991)
Steven Holl (a studio established in New York City in 1977) created an installation exploring the boundaries -- both real and psychological -- between the urban and the rural, the interior and exterior, proximity and distance, vertical and horizontal space. The firm exhibited models and drawings from realized works and concepts.