Sean Olah

Sean Olah

Los Angeles, CA, US


View Master Residence

Domesticity and Displays of Identity Performance:

In 1956, British architects Peter and Alison Smithson proposed a socio-technocratic vision of the House of the Future. Although intended as a prototypical residence for a young couple, the project was experienced as an exhibition that involved paid actors in planned domestic scenarios performing under the gaze of a voyeuristic public. The Smithson’s futurist project became an unintended critique of display, and an inciting event in public and private inversions.

Today the phenomenon of online social networking has extended these psychological and behavioral inversions, leading to a perceived collapse of public and private domains, but the physical consequences of these conditions have yet to be fully explored or embodied.

Through the tropes of poché, transparency, legibility, and aperture, it is my proposal to amplify the idiosyncrasies of the collapse of privacy through a radical renegotiation of the private home in the public realm. The reconfiguration of distance and alignment between public and private spheres will create new programmatic consequences, and ambiguities of spatial definition, as a direct response to the abnormalities of contemporary social conventions.

Located on the Venice Boardwalk, the site provides voyeuristic potential in an environment committed to cultural exhibitionism, and contextualizes the project’s concern with phenomenological issues through its proximity to the lineage of the Light and Space artists of the 1960’s and 70’s who occupied the vicinity. The boardwalk becomes a setting for the physical exploration of performative effects in public and private conflation.

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Status: School Project