> Introduction to Jacques Fresco and The Venus Project

I do not want to insult Jacques Fresco by calling his projects as utopias. In fact I consider utopia as a wanted future even if it is more or less realistic. To turn utopian visions into reality is usually just a question of time. This is true with his Venus Project, where the constraints to perform it are so much more ideological than technological. 

"The Venus Project offers a comprehensive plan for social reclamation in which human beings, technology and nature will be able to coexist in a long term, sustainable state of dynamic equilibrium."

The Venus Project, as a holistic plan for a new socioeconomic system, began to be developed in 1975, and today it is globally well known due to Zeitgeist documentaries. This belated recognition was only possible because the Zeitgeist's director truly believes in Jacques Fresco's ideas, and especially in its deep perception of society's structural problems. Fresco is a ninety-seven years old American genius with a kind of 'anti-system' behavior. Therefore, despite his immense experimental research mainly related to automation design, the academics and the media rarely took their work seriously. Nowadays, their ideas seem to make more sense than ever.

The Project Venus is commonly represented by images of modern cities created from scratch. Fresco defends that the existing cities are not sustainable, what means that eventually they will turn into big museums. So, in a sustainable and automated world, how do new cities should look like?

"Its geometrically elegant and efficient circular arrangement will be surrounded by, and incorporated into the city design, parks and lovely gardens. This city will be designed to operate with the minimum expenditure of energy using the cleanest technology available, which will be in harmony with nature to obtain the highest possible standard of living for everyone. This system facilitates efficient transportation for city residents, eliminating the need for automobiles."

"These super-size skyscrapers will assure that more land will be available for parks and wilderness preserves, while concurrently helping to eliminate urban sprawl. Each one of these towers will be a total enclosure system containing an access center, as well as childcare, educational, health, and recreational facilities. This will help alleviate the need to travel to outside facilities."

"Their structural elements will be flexible and coherently arranged to best serve individual preference. These pre-fabricated, modular homes, embodying a high degree of flexibility inconceivable in times past, could be built anyplace one might imagine, amidst forests, atop mountains, or on remote islands."

Fresco's urban planning ideology is noticeably influenced by old concepts as Ebenezer Howard's Garden-Cities or Le Corbusier's Cité Radieuse. It is extraordinary how he updates them for a very different technological context. I recommend to watch some videos about Venus Project to know more details, but specially to note the great amount of passion Fresco put on his ideas.

(Video of Jacques Fresco explaining the city systems)
(The Venus Project website)
(A Future by Design - a documentary about Jacques Fresco)
(Zeitgeist, the Movie - first of the four documentaries produced by Peter Joseph)

No comments:

Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...