ScrapHouse: The Movie


I just got back from the premiere screening of ScrapHouse, shown as part of San Francisco’s Architecture and the City film festival. ScrapHouse was a proto-type single family home that made its much-laboured debut in 2005 as part of World Environment Day. Entirely made from salvaged material, ScrapHouse not only offers the comforts of home, but is also completely code compliant. And big. Very big. I remember seeing magazine (and blog) photographs last year, but tI just didn’t understand the scale of this project until I saw theis movie. The film also does a great job of explaining basic ideas of construction and exploring just how the design evolved and what materials were used. And of course, what architecture documentary would be complete without a little drama. With a start to finish construction schedule of 10 days, there were plenty of architect-contractor conflicts (and crack smoking accusations) to help drive the plot.

Sadly, ScrapHouse existed for an all-too-ephemeral 4 days. Although there were certain parties interested in purchasing the project, the cost of moving it was just too high. Appropriately…neigh, poetically, ScrapHouse was torn down and returned from whence it came: the dump. So what’s next for the ScrapHouse team? Nothin…for now, anyway. When / if the idea is revisited, the team mentioned they’d like to take the next natural step – a permanent ScrapHouse.

Oh, and I was amazed to learn that The San Francisco Recycling & Disposal Center (re: the dump) offers an Artist in Residence program!

ScrapHouse premieres on the National Geographic Channel September 18 at 7:00 and 10:00 pm PT. Don’t miss it!

&#183 Scraphouse website