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  • Design
  • Issue 35

Spaceship House

The mothership of Googie architecture. Words by Tristan Rutherford. Photograph by James Carriere, Spaceship House, La Selva Beach, CA.

The Spaceship House, built in California by architect Mary Gordon, is a place that E.T. could call home: It’s a curvaceous white beacon topped by TV-shaped towers and encircled by an outdoor staircase that looks like a radar dish.¹

It could only have been built in the 1970s. Back then, the United States faced the twin specters of war and recession. These grim prospects forced some into spiritualism and yoga (Iyengar and Ashtanga both put down roots during that decade) while others sought solace in astronomy and acid. Architecture, music and film (see Close Encounters of the Third Kind and Invasion of the Body Snatchers) followed the Space Age trend.² NASA became so confident of finding extraterrestrial life

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This story is from Kinfolk Issue Thirty-Five

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