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Finding aid for the MOD-X Building System records, 1952-1967
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The MOD-X Building System records document the brief life of this product as its creators sought to find a niche for it in the post World War II efforts to industrialize building design and construction through prefabrication. Consisting primarily of legal and financial records and correspondence among the various stakeholders, as well as drawings and photographs, the archive provides insight into one of the most critical issues that the architectural profession faced during the period spanning the second half of the 1940s until well into the 1960s: how to design buildings that could be mass produced by big construction companies while at the same time maintaining sufficient artistic freedom to make the buildings interesting and attractive.
In November 1952, the London-based architectural firm of Harrison & Seel applied to trademark the name "MOD-X" for a prefabricated modular building system it had developed. Both the role of inventor and a commitment to industrialized architecture were new directions for a fairly conventional small firm, whose largest and most lucrative project up to that moment had been the Festival Gardens in Battersea Park for the Festival of Britain (1951). Yet, the seeds for such a shift were present. The firm of Harrison & Seel had three partners, Donald Dex Harrison (known as Dex), his brother Norman Harrison, and Ernest Seel, but one of them, Dex Harrison, was especially committed to a new paradigm for architecture in the post-war world.
6.6 linear feet (8 boxes)
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