“Living in America,” a phrase written on wooden panels traveling with the model of Frank Lloyd Wright’s Broadacre City (1929–58), evokes a question that preoccupied architects and planners throughout the mid-twentieth century: How to live together? Wright’s proposal for an exurban settlement of single-family houses offered one possible answer; plans for large public or subsidized housing located in urban areas presented another. Although these two visions seem a world apart, they share a common history.
This exhibition shows how two different approaches to housing combine societal aspiration with racial segregation and socioeconomic inequality, and asks: How to live in America, together?
The exhibition’s narrative takes the form of two interwoven plotlines, developed through displays of project-specific drawings, photographs, and other material dating from the late 1920s to the late 1950s.
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