This was the Future, Vol.41

typed for your pleasure on 5 October 2009, at 7.05 pm

Sdtrk: ‘Si vous connaissez quelque chose de pire qu’un vampire, parlez m’en toujours, ça pourra peut-être me faire sourire’ by Stella

Although it’s painfully obvious that I loves me some 20th Century Modern design, I do have to go on record here as saying that most of the Seventies was rubbish, as it was as if the worst parts of the Sixties were magnified. Disco, for example. Southern rock. Unnecessary pornstar sideburns and impossibly wide Starscream lapels. Avocado and goldenrod as legitimate colour choices. The list of atrocities goes on. Thankfully, though, the decade wasn’t a complete stylistic cesspit; personally, I’ve always believed that a decade’s overall zeitgeist never starts immediately upon the first year — the Sixties didn’t really end until about 1973, for instance. Plus, the Seventies thankfully brought us Punk and dystopian scifi films, so it wasn’t a complete loss. Overall, stylistically speaking, I’m more ‘Ashes to ashes‘ than I am ‘Life on Mars‘.
Where am I going with this, you may be asking in an annoyed tone? Well, 1971 managed to spawn another lost architectural gem — the Venturo prefab house, designed by Matti Suuronen.

The walls were double-skinned fibreglass with 2″ of polyurethane foam, and the floors were an insulated composite beam of marine grade plywood. The whole thing weighed just four tons and sat on 16 small piers. One module contained the bathroom, kitchen and sauna; the other shipped with the filler pieces.

Much like Buckminster Fuller’s Dymaxion House, the entire assemblage was built for easy on-site construction and breaking-down, should the owner wish to relocate, and much like “Bulle“ à 6 coques, the Venturo units were made for a variety of swinging Seventies recreational uses, such as a holiday home, a bungalow, a ski lodge, etc. Unfortunately, much like the Dymaxion House and the “Bulle“ à 6 coques, the idea just didn’t take off amongst the general public. Although, oddly enough, quite a few of the finished units were utilised in Finland as service stations for BP; one still stands, in desperate need of renovation.

Matti Suuronen was also the architectural mind behind another mod prefab structure, the Futuro House, which fellow iDollator Everard had once suggested I write about. Perhaps I shall! Perhaps I shall.

From the comments section on the site the article comes from:

Krissie says: I WANT ONE! But, I only have one question: Where is the bedroom?
dru says: Where ISN’T the bedroom?

This, then, is Seventies

Random similar posts, for more timewasting:

This was the Future, Vol.40 on September 17th, 2009

This was the Future, Vol.14 on July 21st, 2005

12 have spoken to “This was the Future, Vol.41”

  1. Wolfgang writes:

    (snotty voice) Ah, yes… the seventies, when plywood and fiberglass were considered acceptable exterior finishes… and let’s have a look on the inside, shall we? Well, well, just as I expected… tack city! What could they possibly (wow-chikka-wow-wow) Hey! Is that a SHAG CARPETING AREA RUG in my 70s pad, along with some of those (OOM-chikka-OOM) plastic furniture pieces with the big marshmallow-y orange foam cushions and OH MY GOD is that (Wheee-oom-CHIKKA-BOOM-BOOM) the weird soft paneling stuff with organic lines just simply coating my (Ba-bow-chikka-bow-bow) ENTIRE SF-LIKE INTERIOR where I can don my LOGAN’S RUN OFFICIAL CLEAN-LINE JUMPSUIT and run ROLLERBALL-LIKE into the walls without fear of injury, and then lounge around in my MACRAME HAMMOCK watching THE TOWERING INFERNO on my FAUX WOOD-CABINET CONSOLE TECHNICOLOR TELEVISION? Holy tit-licking disco babes, the seventies WERE awesome! I like! I want! There must be a company out there that still has the plans for these…

  2. JM writes:

    Ah, faux wood and shag carpeting. Those were the days (never mind that I wasn’t yet born).

  3. Pihlajatar writes:

    Do you know the book “Futuro – Tomorrow’s House from Yesterday” edited by Marko Home and Mika Taanila? It’s very interresting. Lots of nice pictures too.

    BTW, I mentioned you and your blog in my blog at but unfortunately it’s in Finnish so you propably won’t be able to understand. The post is about real dolls as a cultural phenomenom.

    I find your blog very interresting.

  4. Davecat writes:

    WG –
    What would you say is better for a wall covering — Verner Panton-style wall panels, or wood panelling? Depends on what kind of decor you’re going for, really. Is your home secretly Barbarella’s space station, or do you live in a suave and sybaritic bachelor pad?

    The only thing the Venturo is missing is a couple of monstera deliciosa plants here and there. It’s the Official Houseplant of the Seventies!

    ‘Tit-licking disco babes’. What a great idea! The Venturo house is missing a couple of those as well. 😉

    JM –
    I keep thinking you’re older than I am, and would therefore remember all this lovely decor! Waka-chika-wow-wow. 🙂

    Pihlajatar –
    I was not aware of that book before, but thanks for bringing it to my attention! Books like that are somewhat bittersweet to own, as 90% of the items detailed in them are something I’d love to own. They’re like catalogues of outrageously over-priced things!

    And thanks for the mention on your blog, there! You’re right, I don’t understand a lick of Finnish. 🙂 So I humbly ask: how long would a translation take? I mean, it’s an article about RealDolls, so of course I must know what it says. Doubly so if it speaks about myself and the Missus. 🙂

    Thanks for dropping a line, and do feel free to stop round again, of course!

  5. Annie writes:


    Nothing to do with anything in this panel but HAPPY BIRTHDAY DAVECAT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  6. Davecat writes:

    Thanks, Annie. 🙂 You’ve been scarce lately! What gives?

  7. Annie writes:

    I’ve been busy as all hell trying “to get things in line” for the holidays. So pretty much I’m like a chicken with it’s head cut off 😐

  8. Annie writes:

    Oh and have a healthy and safe Thanksgiving with the fam 🙂

  9. Davecat writes:

    Annie –
    You sound like me! Only drop the ‘for the holidays’ part out of that sentence, and replace it with ‘with my life’. You know. 😐

    Hope your Turkey Slaughter Day was all you hoped for and more!

  10. Annie writes:

    I had a nom nom nomtastic holiday and it’s bad I caught the oink apparently. So the doc says, though I did manage to stay awake at the movie theatre the day after thanksgiving. Though I am going to try to write on this more..I love your site..I miss Shi-Chan so give her an immensely big hug from me 🙂

  11. Davecat writes:

    Holy crap, you got hamthrax?? 😐 That’s no good! Shi-chan (who appreciated her hug, by the way) and I say Get well soon!!
    Having swine flu is no way to live. You might develop an unfortunate hatred for bacon, and that’s utter madness. Fact.

    Rest up, and hope to see you round here more! In fact, you can catch up on older posts whilst resting up, hint hint. 😉

  12. Annie writes:

    Thank you guys 🙂 I will never hate the bacon..matter of fact I’m eating some now with my Waldorf salad 🙂 I have been sleeping a lot this past week and am starting to feel the goods. I may end up staying awake for a whole week to catch up on newer posts on here. I am going to try writing to more people more often. I’m tired of my social slackability lol. Though take care and I’ll speaketh to thine soon 🙂

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