It’s the 1930s car that was meant to change American lives. And now the Richard Buckminster Fuller’s Dymaxion is back – courtesy of Norman Foster.
Fuller, born in 1895, is best known for his geodesic domes, but his ultimate hope was that the three-wheeled Dymaxion – which looked like a VW camper van crossed with a pinball flipper – would not only fly, but be phase one of a social revolution, fuelled by the latest technology. Only three were ever built. No 1 caught fire and No 3 was turned into scrap; only No 2 survived. It now sits in the National Automobile Museum in Reno, Nevada – or it did until 18 months ago, when the architect Norman Foster decided he wanted to fulfil a dream, and build Dymaxion No 4. So he borrowed No 2 for inspiration. Foster’s Dymaxion, which the architect has just unveiled, is striking and spacious. Boasting an emerald green body topped with a white roof, it looks part wingless aircraft, part beetle – like something from the 1930s sci-fi film Things to Come.
Ivorypress Art + Books is to stage an exhibition of Fuller’s work, from 1 September to 30 October, in Madrid. The show brings the different strands of his influential career, and will be the first chance to see the recently completed recreation of the Dymaxion Car.