REVISITED ONLINE: May 26, 2020 – Ongoing
    Organized by Lauren Schell Dickens, curator


    • Todd Hido
      #2523 from the series Outskirts, 1999, 1999
      Chromogenic print on paper, 48 × 38 inches
      Museum purchase with funds contribuetd by the Collections Committee

      A house is personal. We all live somewhere, in some type of shelter—apartment, mobile home, tent—or with its pointed lack.  Most common in Silicon Valley is the single-family house, an archetype and American icon enmeshed in conflicting and intertwined imaginaries. The house, and related ideas of home and shelter resonates widely in discussions of gender, immigration, race, and homelessness.  It is a cipher for aspiration—homeownership is the backbone of the American Dream—and childhood memory, as well as loss and inequality. Public policy debates commingle with the intensely personal experiences that we inscribe into the walls of our houses, the literal intersection of private and public, self and other, the uncertain divide along which identity is navigated.

      In our increasingly itinerant and unstable world, The House Imaginary brings together varied explorations of the house as both an architectural and psychological space. Drawn primarily from the permanent collection of the San José Museum of Art, the nostalgic, critical, and at times contradictory perspectives presented in the work on view resonate with ongoing transformations in our city.  International in scope, The House Imaginary asks: What it is to live in a rooted, built house in today’s era of mobility? How can a house symbolize both refuge and instability? Can we know others—and can they know us—through our dwellings?