09.08.14
Laura Tarrish | Essays

Hunter | Gatherer: The House

A house may not always be a home but it is an iconic shape. Through the work of architects, graphic designers, illustrators, photographers and artists, we see how the visual representation of a house continues to endure through various interpretations.

The brilliant Spanish graphic designer, Isidro Ferrer, often incorporates his own sculptural illustration in his print work.








Norwegian painter Hanne Borchgrevink, a master at distilling this notion of house in both color and form, has explored this shape in her paintings for many years.








Master Plan by California designer Chad Wright. Photography by Lynn Kloythanomsup of Architectural Black.








Broken Houses, scale models built from an online photographic collection of abandoned and decaying buildings, were created and
photographed by New York-based Israeli Ofra Lapid.




House no. 4, Inkjet print on archival paper, 16''x18''


House no. 39, Inkjet print on archival paper, 16''x18''


House no. 49, Inkjet print on archival paper, 16''x18''


House no. 64, Inkjet print on archival paper, 16''x18''


Your House is a spectacular limited edition laser-cut book documenting the Copenhagen home of Danish/Icelandic artist Olafur Eliasson. Each page represents 2.2cm of the actual house, allowing the reader to move through the rooms of the structure from front to back. Concept by Olafur Eliasson, design by Michael Heimann and Claudia Baulesch, (2006). Photographs © 2006 Olafur Eliasson





For a closer look at the book, check out their video:


Olafur Eliasson, Your House, 2006 from Studio Olafur Eliasson on Vimeo.


Paula Rebson (USA)
“In its simplest form, If We Lived Here was built in an attempt to provide shelter for the birds that were displaced when their home was destroyed. In its most complex form it is a quiet and haunting, ghostlike reminder of what was, what is no longer, and what may never be.”








Posters by Swedish design studio TAF for (Danish) Paper Collective. A percentage of each poster’s sale was donated to Architecture Sans Frontieres (ASF) International.

"For the motif of the two posters we designed a villa of 125 square meters," TAF explained. "The concept is based on a raised ground level put on stones like a traditional old grain store from Sweden."





Field Notes by Rachel Phillips was created after discovering a box of old letters and postcards in her grandparent’s attic. Phillips fashioned origami houses out of the collection, photographed and printed them, via a wet transfer process, onto the vintage envelopes.








Badlands of Modernity (2013) by Piotr Chizinski features 756 Laser cut paper houses.






From Jeremiah Johnson comes Dream Homes, a series of houses built from unopened credit card applications shown in this video and photos. Johnson states "The Dream Homes Project consists of 11 model reproductions of houses constructed from personalized unopened credit card applications that the artist collected for over 14 years. The series was conceived and constructed during the debilitating housing crisis, which affected many American lives. Each home was modeled after the foreclosed homes in his own neighborhood."




Dream Home#5-unopened credit card applications, tape, hot glue, foam core. 44x20x22


Dream Home#4-unopened credit card applications, tape, hot glue, foam core. 44x20x22




Finally, a charming video from animator and illustrator Luiz Stockler.




For many more intriguing examples of artists who explore the concept of home or use the iconic peak-roofed shape follow my Pinterest Board “House“.

Posted in: Art, Hunter | Gatherer


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Laura Tarrish Laura Tarrish is a collage illustrator and a compulsive ephemera collector currently based in Portland, Oregon. Her editorial clients have included Apple Computer, Chronicle Books, The Washington Post, and United Airlines.  As the founder of Bridgetown Papers, Laura has created custom work for individuals including Isabel Allende, Tom Brokaw and Bob & Lee Woodruff.  She has been a contributor to Uppercase Magazine and Felt & Wire.

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