Austrian-based architecture critic and author Bart Lootsma observes that society has an issue with finding freedoms. As people become more individualized, he argues, freedom does not result in more difference but instead a generic city in the face of unfathomable risks. Up against an uncertain future, should we protect ourselves in isolation or instead become greater risk-takers? While in Australia for the Adelaide Festival of Ideas, Lootsma talked to Timothy Moore about the problems of risk and the Australian dream.
Timothy Moore The freedom to buy and build one’s own house reached a crescendo in the late twentieth century. The Dutch have a term for this, Het Wilde Wonen (“Wild Living”); Dutch architecture and urbanism practice MVRDV called it Light Urbanism. Here, it is called the Australian Dream. It refers specifically to the freedom of house buyers to build their own home. In Australia, a First Home Owner Grant was established in the year 2000 to give first-time home owners $7,000 to spend on this dream. What does the freedom of buying one’s own house mean?