Architecture is an art, a science and a profession, but it is also a business. Green modern prefab design is a niche of a niche business. That is why I admire Michelle Kaufmann so much; She is a rare example of a good architect who gets green, but she is an equally talented marketer. We have already seen her assault of the booming prefab modern gingerbread scene, her takeover of google earth, her white papers and her self-published book. Now she is invading LegoLand.
It is in her Smart Home: Green + Wired exhibit at Chicago’s Museum of Science; Michelle writes
Among the things we’re most excited to see in Smart Home 2.0 are all the great new gadgets and gizmos for kids. But it’s the lowest-tech, most old-school kid’s toy that we love the most: the Smart Home made entirely out of legos. This tiny replica of the actual mkSolaire is surprisingly true to the original, with it’s cement board and Ipe wood siding, glass doored garage, and even green roof.
We love the legoSolaire so much because one of the most important goals of this exhibit is engage children in the conversation on how and why to go green. The hope is to teach and inspire them with projects, like this one, that cultivate ideas and solutions.
Indeed. But it also shows that there are so many ways for architects to get their messages out, and if half of them did half as much as Michelle does, the profession would be in a lot better shape. We need to teach the public about the importance of building green, about the 46% of CO2 that comes from buildings, about how they should live if they want to make a difference. We could all take more lessons from Michelle.
Marketing Lessons from Michelle Kaufmann:
Michelle Kaufmann Designs McMansion Gingerbread
Marketing Design: Green Modern Prefab Meets Google
Nutrition Labels For Houses
Book Review: Prefab Green