Sorry, Out of Gas
Architecture's Response to the 1973 Oil Crisis
Edited by Giovanna Borasi, Mirko Zardini. Texts by Adam Bobbette, Daria Der Kaloustian, Pierre-Édouard Latouche, Caroline Maniaque.
The year 1973 marks one of the most important turning points in the history of the twentieth century. Prior to that year, the world had become accustomed to a plentiful supply of inexpensive fossil fuels--especially oil. During this first major international oil crisis, however, the western world's dependency on unstable eastern energy resources became dramatically clear.
Published to accompany the comprehensive and enlightening 2008 exhibition, 1973: Sorry, Out of Gas, hosted by the Canadian Centre for Architecture in Montreal, this beautifully designed, frightening and strangely inspiring volume examines the oil crisis of 1973 as the major precedent of contemporary concerns about energy resources and fossil fuel dependency. The 1973 shortage triggered research and development of renewable energy sources, improved technologies and sparked social experiments that were to have an enduring impact on the fields of architecture and policy in both America and Europe.
Put together by the acclaimed Italian book designer Massimo Pitis, this volume includes a monumental stash of documentary photographs, ephemera, documents, transcripts and original writings on all things related to the oil crisis--from Jimmy Carter to underground utopias. Reproductions cover everything from impossible traffic jams leading up to empty gas stations to board games with names like Energy Quest and Petrol. Specially conceived for this occasion, an illustrated tale by Harriet Russell, whose work is regularly featured in Time Out and the Guardian, introduces the ideas behind this book from a child's point of view. Russell's drawings depict ironic and humorous situations that will familiarize children with energy-saving and oil dependency concerns.