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The first and last Lego kit Coupland purchased as a child was No. 345, which forms a modern single-storey house complete with a fence, gate that opens and closes, carport and car. For his 345 Modern House installation, the artist has recreated 100 such kits using original Lego parts as well as hundreds of hand-cast resin pieces in the place of components that are now impossible to find. The row upon row of identical houses was once idealized as a suburban paradise, indicative of social betterment and progress. Today, however, such widespread repetition is viewed as an unsettling, even authoritative, view of advancement.

Growing up on the West Coast of North America in the latter half of the twentieth century, Douglas Coupland's childhood was imbued with a deep-rooted optimism, a sense that tomorrow would be an improvement on today. It wasn't until the 1990s that the artist realized his belief in the inevitability of progress was rooted in his post-war upbrining. Through his work, Coupland reflects on both the dystopic and fantastical possibilities that emerge from this perspective.

Details

  • Title: 345 Modern House
  • Creator: Douglas Coupland
  • Date: 2014
  • Physical Dimensions: w304.8 x h10.2 x d228.6 cm (overall, 100 components)
  • Exhibition section: Growing Up Utopian
  • Credit line: Courtesy of the Artist and Daniel Faria Gallery
  • Type: sculpture
  • Medium: Lego, resin

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