Famous for his Geodesic Dome Houses and Bucky Balls, Buckminster Fuller (1895-1983), was an architect, inventor and early proponent of green technology. A celebration of his life and legacy will be held at various venues around New York City starting tomorrow, June 23 2008, with the Buckminster Fuller Challenge Conferring Ceremony at the Center for Architecture.
The $100,000 prize is awarded annually for "solutions that radically advance human well-being and ecosystem health". This year’s recipient is Dr. John Todd for his Comprehensive Design for a Carbon Neutral World: The Challenge of Appalachia, which proposes a plan for the economic and environmental renewal of parts West Virginia scarred by the coal mining industry.
The Whitney museum begins its exhibition, Buckminster Fuller: Starting With The Universe on June 26 highlighting five decades of Fuller’s work in design and technology that addressed dwindling natural resources, sustainability, poverty, homelessness and disease .
Much of Fuller’s work, like this Dymaxion car, was a commercial failure but his ideas were ground-breaking. Fuller’s Fly’s Eye Dome, pictured behind, which will be displayed at La Guardia Place NYC, had many advantages over conventional buildings: its design made it stronger and safer, its low construction costs and ease of transport made it quick to erect while lower heating and cooling costs made it cheaper to run. For all that, dome living never took off, although you can see examples world-wide or even purchase plans and build your own.
For details of other Buckminster Fuller events including Bucky’s Ge-Odyssey Family Day contact the Center for Architecture.