The Small De-Mountable House
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by Marlenka   
Thursday, 14 April 2011
De-mountable house built by Johnny in the Auroville's forest. (Photographer: Marlenka)Aurovilian Johnny, Australian born, a man who is the quintessence of an Aurovilian; he lives simply, happily, he works/teaches simply because he is. Johnny reveals that he has always been fascinated with small spaces and the science of building.  As a student of Buckminster Fuller (who was not in fact an architect) Johnny took it to heart that 'man is a problem-solving device,' and imbibed Bucky's geometric insights. From all this comes the small de-mountable house, an optimal house for this climate, states Johnny. A de-mountable house is not a new concept by any means; in 1945 it was available in the West: ordered by mail and delivered by helicopter.

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Here in Auroville it is built raised off the ground, it can be taken apart and shifted as the need or want arises and even though simple, does meet the basic needs.  Ideal for a single person, it can be suitable for a family by combining two or more of the single units. Johnny feels it is our obsession with permanence which drives us to build with concrete rather than the materials at hand: Auroville timber and bamboo. Can the small de-mountable house be a solution or at least part of the solution for Auroville's on-going housing needs?