25% Funded $150,900.00 Raised
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History of Aluminaire

In 1930 Walter Sweet, co-chair of the joint Allied Arts and Industries and the Architectureal League of NY exhibition, asked A. Lawrence Kocher to come up with an idea for the biannual buildings products display. Kocher had been managing editor of Architectural Record since 1928, and thus had contact with people in the building products industry. At the previous League exhibition Kocher had made a full scale “modern architect’s office space” which had been a popular success. Perhaps in relation to this, Kocher hired Albert Frey, a 28 year old Swiss architect who had just arrived in the United States, having worked for Le Corbusier in Paris. The two proposed a model dwelling utilizing, and thus displaying, standard, “off the shelf” materials.

The design was influenced by the modern movement which had reached its zenith in Europe in terms of both image and its progressive political concern with housing. Albert Frey’s experience in Le Corbusier’s office provided the principle idea for a “maison minimum” which had been a common European concern for the housing problem of the industrial revolution city. In fact Kocher and Frey published an article in the same month’s Architectural Record showing similar units in an inner city ‘super block’ organization. However, it also seems to have been influenced by the American growth of industrial mass production materials and the advanced representation of this in Bucky Fuller’s work.


Virtual Tour of Aluminaire

Jaime Jeminez - Final Project for HIAA 20122 Brown University

This is a digital rendering of A. Lawrence Kocher and Albert Frey's 1931 prefabricated aluminum and steel home, intended to be mass-produced and affordable. It implements Le Corbusier's "Five Points Towards a New Architecture" in a compact space, and incorporates specially designed features to take advantage of its small footprint: a dumbwaiter, garden terrace, sliding screens and retractable furniture all were intended to make this a comfortable and functional "machine for living in".

Future of Aluminaire

Palm Springs Life, Feb 2015, by Lydia Kremer

The famed Aluminaire House, Albert Frey’s 1931 experimental modern structure, is poised to become the next big attraction in Palm Springs.

After languishing disassembled in a shipping container in New York for years while the Aluminaire House Foundation searched for a home, a confluence of timing, creative thinking, and passionate dedication aligned in a brilliant solution to give the Aluminaire House a new lease on life in Palm Springs.

The structure will be a topic of discussion at the upcoming Modernism Week, Feb. 12-22. Tickets are still available for a lecture by Frey expert and author Joseph Rosa at 10 a.m. Feb. 14 at the Hilton Palm Springs as well as "An Evening for Aluminaire" hosted by Palm Springs Mayor Steve Pougnet from 6-8 p.m. Feb. 15 at the Palm Springs Visitors Center.


Choose a Pledge Level

Pledge $100.00

Supporter Level

Pledge $250.00

Friends of Frey Level

Pledge $500.00

Aluminaire Level

Pledge $1,000.00

Foundation Level

Pledge $2,500.00

Aluminaire House Endowment Level

Project Backers

Thank you to the following people for their generous donation.

  • Lisa and Phillip Smith

    Donated $250.00

  • Debra Hovel

    Donated $100.00

  • Gregory Wilson

    Donated $100.00

  • Marshall Roath

    Donated $100.00

  • Monty & Jerry Collins-Dark

    Donated $250.00

  • Michael Pannier

    Donated $100.00

  • Aluminaire Fundraiser January 23, 2015

    Donated $150,000.00

Aluminaire News

Desert Cool: 10 Must-See Events at Palm Springs Modernism Week | Dwell

DWELL, Erika Heet, FEBRUARY 12, 2015 Today marks the beginning of Palm Springs Modernism Week, a 10-day celebration of the people and places that made the desert hideaway a hotbed of modern chic. Dwell shares our favorites. Have you ever tried moving a 1931 prefab across the country? This is the current plan for Aluminaire—designed […]

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Help reassemble the Aluminaire House in Palm Springs, California.