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Tour of There is Room with Kwong Von Glinow

About the program


MAS Context

1564 N Damen Ave #204, Chicago, IL 60622

Tour of the exhibition There is Room with Lap Chi Kwong and Alison Von Glinow of Kwong Von Glinow.

There is Room is an exhibition that documents Kwong Von Glinow’s ongoing and completed Chicago housing projects that are sited on standard Chicago lots. The projects are presented as a series of ½” scale models, including a single-family house along an alleyway, a slab-on-grade three-flat, a three-flat with commercial ground floor, a 6-flat, and finally a rooftop addition to a historic Greystone. The models express quality of space and light on standard Chicago lots.

These are common and familiar residential typologies found throughout Chicago, and most often find their economic value through “comps” or comparables. Because of this, in many instances, these types seek sameness in order to be comparable. As a testament to this sameness, only minor modifications have been made to the two-, three-, four-, and six-flat typologies since they were developed over 100 years ago. A simple survey of real estate websites will show that among all searchable properties for the two-to-six flat type, there are only a handful of general layouts with minor variations between them, regardless of their age—historic or contemporary. Yet, values and priorities have shifted, and dwelling configurations and lifestyles have changed. At the same time, these building types are a builder’s and developer’s dream. When comps demand sameness, this is the best opportunity to create cookie-cutter plans throughout the city.

There is Room presents five articulated ½” scale models, each seeking to communicate contemporary spatial values in living and an optimism for multiple readings of these standardized typologies. Consideration is given to general layout and circulation, quality of space, and natural light.

There is Room:
The City has room for design innovation.
The Building has room to reevaluate how it accommodates contemporary lifestyles and values.
The Room has the possibility to enhance everyday life.

The City is the Site