Pocket sized proposals for a mammoth project, from visionaries from across the arts spectrum.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

BigBoxBusiness as Model

Riffing off the post from Josh and my response to it why not follow the thread of utilizing the corporate model of architecture? I reference architect Kent Suhrbier from the prototype for this show, the MOPA exhibition Immediate Thought. His sketched proposed reclaiming empty store fronts throughout a city and using them as areas to show work. Why not take it global? Wal-Mart opens huge buildings globally as it shuts down it's own older stores leaving huge gaps of urban waste. Ideally, if this show allows us to imagine a future utopia, something needs to happen to these empty buildings. I propose that after the fall of this corporate beast, the art world re-purposes it's architectural shell. Thus instead of creating one Monolithic-All encompassing structure, we reuse a global network of buildings. Art then can be as accessible as your local Wal-Mart. Perhaps naive or simplistic but something to discuss nonetheless.


  1. although i'm not a huge fan of big box architecture, i definitely like the idea of creative reuse.

  2. yes! ESPECIALLY since this deals with the concept of monoculture, but with a twist, since in theory it IS the culture of all humanity being preserved and exhibited.

    also, if we were to store work in these big boxes by region, it would restore some of what i feel is questionable about the museum context (ie, egyptian relics could retune to egypt, etc.)

  3. I feel this strategic reuse would bring art to the people.. but would the art be safe?

  4. perhaps we rely too heavily on the past...


  5. Part of my argument (picked up by Hannah) is that with this proposal the art stays in context, and hopefully preserves culture. The Futurists could care less about culture and would rather obliterate it all together. And if I remember correctly didn’t the fascists absorb some of their theories?

    As far as the architecture of the actual buildings are concerned I don't really think it matters. If we hold to the museum model (at least for this exercise) which utilizes the cube as "non-space" in the interior, shouldn't this apply to the exterior as well? If it's everywhere (the outside look of a building), then it negates itself from consideration to the art.

  6. this proposal may keep the art regionally in context, but using big box stores takes on it's own sort of gimmicky yet entertaining context, no?

    about the futurists... i don't take them too seriously, in fact i find them somewhat amusing. i believe extremists often help us out of our comfort zones and open our eyes to new perspectives, often unsettling, but still...we see things in a new light. this is good. we may not go as far as they'd hoped, or move toward their ideas at all, but those ideas often provoke thought in new directions.

    i'm having difficulty with the term "non-space". if the idea of non-space refers to the white cube, i still see the white cube as a particular space with particular ideas attached, not a space that ceases to be a space (non).

    the same goes for exteriors. certainly a big box store is not a non-space, if i'm correctly understanding the idea of non-space. perhaps a plain white box building would fit this idea?

    lastly, i don't see how a big box location "negates itself from consideration to the art". the concept of reusing the big box buildings could potentially even overshadow the art.

  7. There is something zombie like about this site. And yet it makes me feel nastalgic and warm.


  8. nostalgia for dead malls...i see what you mean...kind of makes me think of Fast Times at Ridgemont High.