Excerpt from the exhibition poster.

An immersion in the cultural history of North American suburbia

A single-family house with a garden, a swimming pool and a couple of cars in the garage form part of the iconic image of the "American dream". The CCCB explores the cultural history of this lifestyle, continuously reproduced on television, in advertising and in the cinema, while analysing the validity and the most controversial aspects of this urbanistic model. Until 8 September, you have the chance to discover it at Suburbia. Building the American Dream.

The exhibition goes back to the origins of residential neighbourhoods at the beginning of the 20th century and studies how they developed massively in the 1950s, and, at the same time, reviews the economic, political and social context that made possible their unstoppable expansion throughout the United States. 

Today, an increasing number of families are pursuing this version of the dream on the outskirts of the cities, an idea that has spread all over the world. Who hasn't wanted a peaceful place to live with the family, surrounded by nature and a loving neighbourhood? The story of the exhibition, however, goes further and investigates the contradictions of an urbanistic model that arose from social, ethnic and gender segregation. Thus, you will discover the impact of this highly unsustainable lifestyle, centred on continuous journeys by car, through the analysis of examples of housing developments in Barcelona and Madrid. 

The exhibition offers a journey through historical material, period documentaries, photographs, paintings, films and series, novels and magazines, works of art, everyday objects and artistic installations by creators such as Joel Meyerowitz, Norman Rockwell, Nina Leen, Bill Owens, Todd Hido, Angela Strassheim, Ed Templeton, Gabriele Galimberti, Jessica Chou, Weronicka Gesicka, Gregory Crewdson and Elías León Siminiani, among many other artists. 

Suburbia. Building the American Dream invites you to rethink the value of the city and public space today, through criticism of this well-known North American lifestyle. The exhibition will be presented on 20 March and you will have time to see it until 8 September. Visiting hours are from Tuesday to Sunday, from 11 am to 8 pm. The general admission ticket costs €6 and, if you want to buy it, you can do so from the CCCB website.

Publication date: Thursday, 14 March 2024
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