tract houses

In related news, tract housing really creeps me out for reasons I’m not able to explain.  Whenver I see those lines of identical houses I shudder.  I think I’d prefer that community of rectangular futurama blocks to tract housing.


Super-Science Fiction, October 1959.

Cover by EMSH.

Ed Emshwiller (1925-900 was an illustrator whose work was ubiquitous in pulp science fiction magazines and paperbacks from the early 1950s to mid 1960s.

Surprisingly, he lived and worked in tract-housing suburb Levittown on Long Island–the polar opposite of the exotic, alien worlds he depicted on his canvases. He used his family and suburban neighbors as models for his otherworldly scenes.

In later life, he was a pioneer of digital animation.

This Women’s History Month, the National Museum of Women in the Arts wants to know: Can you name five women artists? Learn more about their #5WomenArtists campaign, and follow the hashtag all month long. 

This image is part of Martha Rosler’s House Beautiful series, which combines clippings from the home decor magazine with images of the Vietnam War. 

[Martha Rosler. Tract House Soldier from the series House Beautiful: Bringing the War Home. c. 1967-72. The Museum of Modern Art, New York. © c. 1967-72 Martha Rosler]

EDIT: We’ve kept the static exterior posted above, but just below the cut, the animated version is included to view the other wonderful features of the homes on the market now.

Our digital enchantment team has brought the animated life of Witch Weekly on to our tumblr as well! Check out the advert for Accio Real Estate Firm: from country cottages, to hidden row houses, to unplottable housing tracts, they’ll find the home of your dreams for you!


Whatever happened to Lakewood?

Although the postwar planned community of Levittown, New York was completed first, Lakewood, California, became the archetype of the American suburb. Standardized building components put together in an assembly-line fashion enabled developers Louis H. Boyar, S. Mark Taper, and Ben Weingart to construct 17,500 tract houses in less than three years. Affordably priced at about $7,500, they sold immediately. Anchoring this instant city was the largest shopping center of its day, which offered everything needed for modern living. 

And then, as Joan Didion famously wrote, something went wrong.