Date of Award
Bachelor of Creative Industries Honours
Communications and Creative Industries
Faculty of Education & Arts
This exegesis speculates on the rise and spread of 'McMansions' by exploring possible reactions to this architecture and the contextual dimensions of my photographic response. The exegesis aligns aspects of the 'Uncanny' (Freud, 1919) to new trends in domestic architecture and topographical photography. By pictorially offering a counter-narrative to more conventional representations of the 'dream home', it ironically demonstrates that some houses can be viewed as unhomely. The exegesis explains how cultural anxieties can be experienced when viewing contemporary trends in domestic architecture within new suburban developments. It does this by aligning the increased use of featurism (Boyd, 1980) in suburban architecture to excessive fictional architectural devices first seen in fictional gothic literature, and later, popular culture. Aiding these anxieties, and also explored, is the concept of historically bereft, continually changing architecture only borrowing from imagined or imported ideas of 'home'. This leads to the theory of the 'spatial uncanny' (Vidler, 1994), where a sense of home and belonging evaporates with every re-incarnation of suburbia. As the resulting images are a product of contrived photographic technologies and discourses, the exegesis frames them by referencing post-modem notions of photographic narrative. By the use of modified plastic lenses and high-end digital cameras in low light, a new approach towards architectural photography is made possible.
Gray, M. (2009). McMansions: re-presenting a divided, subdivided and uncanny suburban landscape. Retrieved from http://ro.ecu.edu.au/theses_hons/1258