Press Release


Universal Structure TM


November 7th, 2013 – February 22nd, 2014



GM: I wrote on this subject in the past (. . .) architecture (. . .) becomes sculpture if it’s fantastic & if it’s architecture it’s not fantastic but realistic – my prefab system is very realistic (. . .) it was conceived not by fancy but a rational approach – like a mathematical problem.


–Dick Higgins, Letter to George Maciunas, including George Maciunas’s answer. September 30, 1968. Tate Gallery Archive: 815.


Fluxus Foundation is pleased to announce FLUXUS AS ARCHITECTURE, Universal Structure TM in the foundation exhibition space at 454 W 19th St. 


As part of FLUXUS AS ARCHITECTURE series, the exhibition intends to reposition the revolutionary relevance of Maciunas Prefabricated Building SystemTM in the context of today’s urban setting, arguing for an alternative of human habitat through a system of standardization, modularization and mass-production, where urban efficiency and social welfare play the leading role.


The definition of Universal Structure is two-fold, it is an integral construction system in particular, and an adaptive urban system in general. The former is designed to incorporate all of the modern technological developments in electrical and mechanical engineering, as well as building materials as an integral part, the latter sets the universal framework within which social, political and economic factors come into play.


George Maciunas, educated in architecture at Cooper Union and Carnegie Institute of Technology, held several prestigious professional positions in firms including Skidmore, Owing and Merrill, Olin Mathieson Chemical Corporation and Knoll Associates. As an architect, he was credited with the invention of a structural framework and received a patent for the prefabricated building system in 1961. His design of Fluxhouse, as an example of the system was completed and copyrighted in 1965


Taking Maciunas’ master plan of Ginger Island as a conceptual testing ground, the emergence of Fluxcity stems from the faithful reading and systematic analysis of the original design of Fluxhouse. A spatial syntax is thereupon extracted, which allows for reconfiguration and expansion of a single module to form clusters, communities and urban development. 


Neither is Maciunas System a mere prefabricated prototype, but more of a Universal Structure guided by long-range perspectives, where Maciunas combines his architectural expertise and vision with interdisciplinary intelligence in a humble yet ambitious way, that values the rational reflections on architectural design, manufacturing process and urban development as a whole.


FLUXUS AS ARCHITECTURE, Universal Structure TM is curated by Harry Stendhal, Chairman of Fluxus Foundation, New York, and Fanyu Lin, Master of Science in Advanced Architectural Design, Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation in Columbia University.


The exhibition will be on display from November 7th, 2013 – February 22nd, 2014. An opening reception will take place on November 7th, from 6pm – 8pm, at Fluxus Foundation, 454 W 19th St. New York, NY, 10011.


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