House of the Future for the Daily Mail Ideal Home Exhibition (1956)
The photos and excerpts below are featured in the book Fifties Source Book and highlight the Kitchen of the Future built for the 1956 Daily Mail Ideal Home Exhibition.
Peter and Alison Smithson were major exponents of Modernist architecture in Britain, commissioned to design the House of the Future for the 1956 Daily Mail Ideal Home Exhibition. The house was an exercise in futurist design, built of pre-fabricated plastic. The Smithsons admired the manufacturing methods of the American auto industry. The mass production-based industries had already revolutionized half the house - the kitchen, bathroom, laundry room and garage. The architects advocated using factory-built, fitted kitchen units which could be easily updated. The House of the Future took the concept of flexibility beyond conventional open plan with only the kitchen and bathroom modules differentiated from the rest. An electrostatic dust collector was provided and cooking utensils incorporated their own heating elements. It was ideas such as these that impressed visitors to the exhibition rather than the building itself, with no external windows.