Relaxshax's Blog

John Osorio Buck’s Shelter-Art…The Utopia Eight/Ikea Camper
January 2, 2011, 10:51 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

I randomly found this guy through a google offshoot link and really dig his eye/style/shelter work- he’s based out of Cambridge, MA (Small world!- I’m like 12 miles from there) and I’d love to get an interview down with him at some point perhaps.

Check out some of these shots from his gallery- you can check out more at

The Bare Bones of Utopia Eight

A Pretty Cool Design- John has these available as t-shirts on his site...

AND yet another micro-structure from J.O.B…..

All in all, as wild as these displays and concepts are, as with any structure, there’s something to be taken from, in terms of ideas for tiny living, space efficiency, tiny house design ideas, and general micro-architecture approaches. In this case, we’re also given some good ideas in terms of portability (and even more so with the additional works in John’s portfolio).

-Derek “Deek” Diedricksen


10 Comments so far
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Cool, I thought the homemade camper could be easily mounted or nested into a pontoon dock or barge type of structure, to create a neat little shanty boat ( sort of like a redneck version of the boats they call… Sea campers ).

Comment by Pat Mahoney

Oh you shouldn’t have said that… Me and my designing mind can see where it would work…. in the front cut out a passage way and a slot in the bunk like they use in a class C motorhome and put the helm station under the over hang with a door in the center so you can get on the foredeck…. Everything over about four feet above the deck would need to be kept very light weight so the boat would be more stable…

Comment by Kristine Bennett

“Sea campers”- love it- “Scampers”- its a brand name/blog title/website waiting to happen….

Comment by relaxshax

oooh, i like the last one, pop up roof, drop down wall. thanks for the ref, will check out.

Comment by kellicox

Thanks for sharing. Do you know if Utopia Eight is on display anywhere currently? Based on the photos, it looks like it’s in a gallery somewhere. However, I checked the website and searched Google but nothing turned up.

Comment by cberg

can’t find anything myself- I’m thinking the photos are from a past exhibit- now over (unfortunately). I’m trying to contact this guy to see if he’d be into coming out to speak/display something at my summer 2011 Massachusetts Tiny Shelter/Structure-Building, hands-on, workshop. I really like his off-the-wall ideas….We’ll see….

Comment by relaxshax

I didn’t find anything about the Utopia Eight…. But I did find where the image came from He may have also used the Glen-L plans as a base for what he did.

Comment by Kristine Bennett

The pics are from ‘The Traveling Scholars’ exhibition at the MFA Boston. The ‘Utopia Eight’ will be on exhibit in Charlotte NC from Jan.-Mar. 2011.

Comment by JOB

Two resources for you that you may like–the first shows a small camper that fits on a pickup. The site it’s on also contains many suggestions for living in tiny spaces:

The second is Ken Isaac’s 1974 book called “Living Structures.” If you can find that one, I think you’d go nuts with it. I had a copy I bought shortly after it was published that finally became totally worn out, and now have an electronic copy. Very much recommended–many of his designs seem to be four decades ahead of their time. In addition to some free-standing micro-homes, Ken showed how to make modular multi-purpose “furniture” based on a three dimensional grid design that can be used in a typical house to magnify the practical use of the space.

Comment by David

Thanks David! I’ll check out that site- and I’ve recently seen the pdf version of Isaac’s book- even blogged on it once- great stuff!
Appreciate the info/input

Comment by relaxshax

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