Creative Response 3: Bauhaus

“A House is Not A Home”

The Housing Development Board (HDB) was formed in the 1960s to clear squatters and slums and solve housing issues in Singapore. This is achieved by building and resettling Singaporeans high-rise, low cost state-built housing that has since then become iconic in Singapore and is one of the many things that make Singapore unique.

With over 82 percent of Singapore living in public housing provided by the government, HDBs have resolved housing shortages and land scarcity problems that plagued the nation in its formation years.

This design aims to capture the elements of HDB and also highlight some of the issues I feel it may face. The difficulty was trying to use basic shapes and its relationship to form abstract designs that would make sense of translate my thoughts. The idea of this design was to deconstruct the shapes of a simple house icon (that consists of a triangle roof and a square build) and combine that with Singapore’s HDB.

The red circle represents the tiny red dot of Singapore that we all live in. The elongated rectangles represents the densely packed HDB housing in Singapore. The use of different colours ( and line weight) to overlap all of the rectangles together was to illustrate the Ethnic Integration Policy that was introduced in the sales of HDB to promote racial integration in the HDB. The yellow triangle carries the meaning of both a roof and also an upwards facing arrow, symbolising Singapore’s continual progress as a nation.

The design attempts to question Singapore’s pursuit of progress and while HDB solves the housing issues of Singapore, many Singaporeans still struggle to find their sense of belonging and identity. Is this ‘home’ truly?