Wednesday, December 04, 2013

Two From August 27, 1965

Of all the plastic houses I've seen, the Monsanto "Plastic Home of the Future" is the best. It looks like a giant toy, doesn't it? Life-sized Barbie and Ken (also plastic) could live there happily. It's amazing how homey it looks (to my eyes, anyway) when surrounded by the lush plantings. If I had one of these homes, I would have to build a fairytale castle nearby.

Here's a nice view taken from the stern of the tuna boat, looking toward the Storybook Land canals, the Casey Jr. Circus Train, and Cinderella's castle. The eucalyptus trees in the background are left over from the original fruit orchards (they were used as wind breaks) - they make a nice natural wall between the park and the outside world.


Alonzo P Hawk said...

I'll bet it was fun to go in the HOF as it must have seemed so different to the average house. In reality as a real estate appraiser I cringe when I see pictures of it. To get an appraisal assignment on a house like that would be a nightmare and not an "attraction" in the magic kingdom.

I does however look like a big plexiglass pie with a piece already eaten. Good shots though, thanks as always.

Anonymous said...

I wonder what the history of the HOF is. Had Monsanto created this before DLand, and then jumped at the chance to show it off in a public environment? Did Disney go to Monsanto with sketches and then Monsanto built it specifically for DLand?

I'd be interested to know.

Melissa said...

If the collectors' market then was the same as it is now, I wonder if they would have tried to sell a playscale version of the House of the Future. I would have bought one if I'd had the money. Of course, my (cheap knockoff brand) childhood Barbie dolls lived in a house we built out of old acoustic ceiling tiles, so there you go.

Love the second shot - another great example of horizon layering in Disneyland's design, and the same motif of multiple forms of transportation crossing the same view that you see in New Tomorrowland.

I've probably mentioned it before, but the "patchwork" around the Storybookland canal always makes me think of the mosaics at the entrance of the Land pavilion at EPCOT.

Tom said...

Great angle on that second shot. Usually pictures around the pirate ship were of the ship itself; this one takes advantage of the elevation and gets a great shot of another attraction. Well done, photographer!

Major Pepperidge said...

Alonzo, I wonder if kids thought the HOF was fun? I could see boys being dragged through as if they were shopping with mom. Or maybe it was so futuristic and different that they thought it was cool! Do you think the Monsanto house is just too funky (or too small) to appeal to buyers?

Anon, if you follow this link on Daveland's website, you will learn more about the House of the Future!

Melissa, I love the idea of a Barbie-sized HOF! That would be pretty large, as toys go. But cool! I love the idea of a smaller model in which you could lift the top half off and see the detailed interior. I wonder if the EPCOT mosaics were created by the same people (or person) who did the now-gone giant mosaic outside of California Adventure?

Tom, a lot of people took pictures of the little Cinderella castle from the Pirate Ship… I guess it really stood out from that vantage point.

Anonymous said...

I remember going in the HOF as a kid and thinking how weird it was. It would never fly today, so small, with so many "shared spaces". I can't imagine my kids sharing the bedrooms in that design. I guess the HOF is now the House of the Past, in more ways than one.

Major, thanks for posting that link to the Daveland site, I was going to do that and you beat me. It's a pretty interesting story, at least for architects.

I love the picture of Casey from the Pirate Ship. You can see the sailcloth sunshade over the Tuna Picnic area too. Nothing better.


Alonzo P Hawk said...

Major, to answer your question, both. Funky and or atypical houses appeal only to the free spirit that built them. They are hard to appraise and really hard to sell if you ever have to.

I hope that Barbie imprisonment was back in the day. Nowadays Barbie would hire a high priced lawyer, sue you for asbestos (ceiling tile) exposure, settle out of court and retire with her gender non-specific partner Ken(dra).

Nancy said...

our Barbies lived in shoe boxes! They would have loved living there :-)

Melissa said...

It was a pretty groovy house. They had a king-size bed made out of an 8-track player and a toilet made from LEGO bricks and half a plastic Easter egg.

But I do like the idea of the smaller 1:12 or 1:20 HoF model. I'd peek in the tiny windows and pretend I was in there. And it'd be made out of the same plastic as the original.

Snow White Archive said...

The subject matter of both pics look like they're giant toys. Vintage DL...great stuff.