The more stuff we accumulate, the more space we need to store it
all. Vast portions of the landscape are claimed and governed by spaces of
storage, their maintenance, and the goods that move through them—or remain
buried within them indefinitely.
This issue of Harvard Design
Magazine investigates and unpacks the contents, containers, and systems of
storage that organize our world.
Storage is the aggregation and containment of the material and immaterial stuff of culture; but also the safeguarding—or hoarding—of energy and
tools for some imagined future purpose. How does all this stuff mask or overcompensate
for economic and ecological bankruptcy? Is storage about greed or need?
Storage, perhaps, is everything we can live without but insist on living with.
“Shelf Life” explores what’s inside the box (shed, tank, urn, vault, crypt, crate, case, pot, bag, vat, morgue, safe, bin, archive, warehouse, cabinet,
cellar, cemetery, depository, locker, freezer, landfill, library). Even as we attempt
to reduce and recycle, the stuff that we dispose of also needs to be stored.
Where do we put it? Our planet is now a saturated receptacle. This warehouse is full, and we’re all inside it.
Table of Contents
A Civic Monument That Never Was
Built Like a Skyscraper
Catching Rain in Singapore
Grain Silos Go to India
Keeping It Fresh
Melissa Cate Christ, Tomas Holderness, Daisy Tam
Robb Moss, Peter Galison
Meals, Ready to Throw Away
The Other City
Trash at the Center of the Theater of the World
Use in Case of Emergency Only
When Aalto Met Google
Anxious about Stuff
Architecture without Content
Carry, Conceal, Hide, Suggest, Cover
Femke de Vries, Joke Robaard
Formatting the Modern Dream
The Five Points of Cloud Architecture
The Temperamental Interior
John May, Zeina Koreitem
La Esmeralda, and a Brief Interrogation of Prison Ship Memory
Hiding in Plain View
Hoarders of Magnitude: Super (and Not-So-Super-) Organisms
Life in Storage
Notes on More
Objectives: The Architectural Potentials of Storage
The Trove: On Vaults, Innards, and the Broad Collection
In My Possession
Designing the Void
Anupama Kundoo, Ateya Khorakiwala
Unité as White Cube
Tom Burr, Alex Kitnick
Lager: Two Storage Buildings for Ricola
Editor in Chief
Meghan Ryan Sandberg
Creative Direction & Design
Jiminie Ha, Fahad Al–Hunaif
With Projects, Inc.
David Huber, Gina Ciancone
Die Keure, Belgium