Ball State University
critic: James KERESTES.
suckerPUNCH: Describe your project.
Eric LAWLER: I scream, U scream is a deviation of two primitives: the sphere and the typical single story American home. . . .
The project began as a continuous topological surface created from the pulling of spheres from a central core—a so-called “goop jack,” no longer visible save for the highest portion of the house. In this way, legibility was fought by finding power in difference. In elevation, the house produces a gradation from legible to abstracted, from spherical top(s) to “sharded” remnants below. Its appearance within a context of banal forms produces an uncanny familiarity. A picket fence, a cozy tree: each echo centuries of familiarity. But not the house. Its juxtaposition with the familiar creates difference that reminds us why fantastical yet monotonous worlds like Disney Pictures’ Tomorrowland leave so much to be desired and why Tokyo’s eclecticism satisfies the heart much more than any hexy grand plan by KPF.
The nature of normality is in absolute flux, a state of constant evolution. A true embrace of the norm is to support this trend. Yet, in the same way that science-fiction speculation has driven real-world innovation, the future needs a manifesto. The production of norm-deviations such as I Scream U Scream House promotes these new futures and throws coal into the engine of normality’s progress. If all of the architectural avant-garde produced speculative work on “goopy” formalism, in all likelihood the built future would be “goopular.” This project, rather than advocating for a Goopy Suburbia, pushes for difference and thus a distinctive urbanism that is all inclusive, endorsing the balanced tension in Koolhaas’s City of the Captive Globe—a relentless grid with a tethered individuality of towers. Monotony must be balanced with stark opposition, an idea supported by such a “sharded” yet goopy house, amid trimmed trees and a homey picket fence.
It screams, “Welcome home!” yet warns, “Don’t always try to keep up with the Joneses!”
sP: What or who influenced this project?
EL: Erin Besler’s Low Fidelity, Tom Wiscombe’s Jacks, Young + Ayata’s Fat Forms, Clark Thenhaus’ Play with Primitives, and Mark Gage’s Condemnation of the Contemporary.
sP: What were you reading/listening to/watching while developing this project?
EL: Reading interviews with Stanley Tigerman, discussions with Jeff Kipnis; watching lectures by Bob Somol; and listening to Grimes and TOKiMONSTA.
sP: Whose work is currently on your radar?
EL: Jimenez Lai, Andrew Kovacs, Design w/ Co. . . . Or, to put it simply, all of the Cool Kids associated with Possible Mediums.
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