NEW WAYS OF LIVING
ClientsMargot og Thorvald Dreyers Fond www.dreyersfond.dk
THE FUTURE OF IT AND ARCHITECTURE
Our project New Ways of Living – NWOL – was awarded a shared 1st prize in January 2001 in the competition concerning the future of IT and architecture, hosted by the Danish Architects Association in cooperation with Margot & Thorvald Dreyers Fund.
We based our proposal on Jules Verne (1828-1905) and his amazing descriptions of the future from the novel, Paris au XXE siècle (Paris in the 20th century), which was locked away in a suitcase not to be discovered until 1989 when it was finally published. The vision of the future that Verne predicts back in the 19th-century is a life among the skyscrapers of glass and steel high-speed, gasoline-powered automotive vehicles, (pocket) calculators, fax machines and a global communications network. The novel portrays a young idealistic poet, Michel Dufrenoy's, suffering and struggle to find happiness in the frightening materialistic dystopia that Paris has evolved into in Verne's bleak and disturbing commentary on the human consequences of technological progress - not unlike George Orwell's ‘1984’.
NWOL provides a critical, yet curious peak into a future 50 years hence, discussing how information technology merges with and partly forms and serves the urban landscape - a new city, with new ways of living. This project should be seen as an extrapolated culmination of social trends that are already demonstrable in our own time. Examples might be the general information and communication technological positivism, laissez-faire capitalism and accelerated technological development. Tomorrow's technology is being built today and the project's goal was to assemble the pieces in one man's utopia and another man’s dystopia.