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Martin / Baxi Architects

The Formica House, designed by architect Emil Schmidlin and constructed by the Formica Corporation for the 1964 World’s Fair in Queens, New York to feature its products was all plastic laminate, inside and out. In its new form, this house is wrapped around itself, its color-coded surfaces scrambled. As in the original house, and just as with television, it is possible to see in but not out; its interior is therefore encased in its own reflections. The rooms dissolve into semi-transparent black and white, with only a narrow band of colored light remaining to record the original chromatic pattern. Space is washed out, like an overexposed picture. Color is squeezed into a tentative line flickering across the screen. Most of the volume is lifted off the ground; entry is only possible through the garage below. There is no point in ever going outside, if you live in an open house.
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