Modern Mirage: Desert Prefab by Students of Taliesen West

Works that come out of Frank Lloyd Wright’s southwestern school of architecture always manage to combine a respect for their institution’s founder with adaptations to needs and materials of our times. This unit is no exception.

The so-called MOD.FAB (images by Bill Timmerman) has distinctively modern colors and planar characteristics, but “the one-bedroom, 600-square-foot prototype residence” also “relies on panelized construction to allow for speed and economy on site or in a factory.”

The walls slip past one another and up above the roof line, giving the impression of complex space and movement despite the relatively small footprint of the structure.

“It can be connected to utilities or be “unplugged,” relying on low-consumption fixtures, rainwater harvesting, greywater re-use, natural ventilation, solar orientation, and photovoltaics to reduce energy and water use. The structure is dimensioned and engineered to be transportable via roadway.”

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