Billboard House provides temporary housing for advertising artists
March 26, 2013
Last year, we saw an interesting concept for the OdMEx, an enormous mobile home with a billboard on the side, on which occupants could sell advertising space for some extra income. Mexican paper company Scribe recently funded a similarly-styled house, but with a much different goal. The Billboard House is a simple home built onto the back of a billboard in Mexico City to temporarily house an artist while she works on a new hand-painted advertisement.
To create the new billboard home, Scribe contracted architect Julio Gomez Trevilla to design a small structure that could meet a person's needs for a short period of time. After a suitable spot was chosen, the trick then was to construct a space that was lightweight enough to attach to the back of a typical billboard, while still having all the amenities a person would need to live there. Trevilla eventually settled on a plan that was less like a house built onto a billboard and more like a billboard built onto an elevated house.
The walls of the main living area are made from sheets of wooden chipboard and lined with plastic to protect them from the elements, while a steel frame keeps the whole structure raised and visible. People can only enter and exit through a door concealed on the front of the billboard, though a small balcony does protrude from the back. A tower is also situated at the top to provide plumbing services.
The interior has been designed to save space while also suiting the resident artist's needs as much as possible. To that end, most of the furniture is on wheels to cater for easy rearrangement, and the bed folds up flat against the wall when not needed. Altogether, the main living area only covers 16 square meters (about 172 square feet) and includes room for a kitchen, dressing room, closet, bathroom, shower, and work desk.
To make use of natural light during the day, several small windows have been built into the walls, and one side of the home is made of transparent material fitted with a curtain. Additionally, the roof has a wooden terrace that's separate from the main building, which both shadows the house from excess heat and gives residents an outdoor area for relaxing.
Mexican-born artist Cecilia Beaven became the house's first resident when she spent 10 days living inside the Billboard House. As part of Scribe's campaign, she painted a mural of about 50 different requests sent in through Twitter, adding new elements each day. The house even hosted a few entertainers on a makeshift stage at the base of the billboard, including a stand up comedian and rock band Molotov.
Scribe has not revealed any further plans for the Billboard House so far, but it's a fair bet that Beaven will not be the last artist to take up residence there.
Check out the Spanish-language video below to see the Billboard House in operation.