Gallery: Animal Estates ‘Model Homes’ by Fritz Haeg


Our favorite visionary designer Fritz Haeg is at it once again, this time with the launch of Animal Estates, the much-anticipated follow up to his Edible Estates of the past few years (2005 to present) and whose official book release, Edible Estates: Attack on the Front Lawn, is tomorrow, February 1st. The 2008 Whitney Biennial will feature the first peek at Animal Estates, an eight site project that examines dwellings for animals and critters that have been displaced or shunned from man-made habitats and settlements. Whether creating art in a manicured suburban front yard, at the local strip mall, or in a city parking lot, Haeg proposes to construct customized dwellings or model homes that will encourage the resettlement of animal species in neighborhoods that would otherwise be devoid of native fauna.

The Animal Estates regional model homes will serve as protoypes for the artist and participants to examine effective ways of re-introducing indigenous species back into altered habitats. Both native and domesticated animals will be considered, and a local zoologist or conservationist will serve as a consultant for the construction of each ecologically sensitive and site-specific dwelling. The entire resettlement process will be documented by a photographer and/or videographer who will track all developments at the site. This is not an instance of biomimicry per se, (which we have covered here before at Inhabitat), but of a genuine look at how we might better integrate and collaborate with animals in the world around us as a means to better understand a dynamic for coexisting in the future.

Animal Estates have been commissioned by the following local art institutions:

1.0: New York, NY / March 6th – June 1st, 2008 / Whitney Biennial 2008
2.0: Austin, TX / March 2008 / Arthouse
3.0: Cambridge, MA / April 2008 / Center for Advanced Visual Studies at MIT
4.0: Baltimore, MD / May 2008 / Contemporary Museum Baltimore
5.0: San Francisco, CA / July 2008 / SF MoMA
6.0: Utrecht, The Netherlands / September 2008 / Casco Projects
7.0: Portland, OR / August 2008 / Cooley Gallery at Reed College
8.0: Anchorage, AK / October 2008 / Alaska Design Forum

+ Animal Estates
+ Fritz Haeg
+ Edible Estates: ‘How to Eat Your Lawn’ on Inhabitat
+ Edible Estates: Attack on the Front Lawn, the book
+ 2008 Whitney Biennial


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  1. metrofilmko April 1, 2008 at 4:18 pm

    This is new video on Fritz I found!

  2. metrofilmko April 1, 2008 at 4:18 pm
  3. oakling February 2, 2008 at 7:17 pm

    But in the case of ecosystems that should have bees, spiders, termites, moles, etc., this is a good idea to keep the system in balance so that something else invasive doesn’t get out of control. It’s like how cockroaches normally are good for the environment because they live in the earth and aerate the soil, making it easier for plants to grow – they only invade houses when pesticide use makes it impossible for them to stay in their natural habitat. Now we just need little cockroach condos….

  4. Tyler January 31, 2008 at 11:31 am

    Those pictures include bees, spiders, and termites. I don’t think too many homeowners will be thrilled to see more of these creatures purposely brought into their neighborhoods. I’m all for more birds, squirrels, and beavers, but termites would swallow my all wood home.

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