Fresco’s Body of Work
At 100 years of age Jacque’s work was displayed at the prestigious Artis Museum in Naples, Florida. The exhibit’s curator, Silvia Perrea, a graduate school professor of architecture stated that Jacque Fresco was the most prolific architectural designer she had ever seen. In the last 47 years of his life (and much was lost before that) he produced 5500 design sketches covering broad ranges of society with 3,851 in city, building, and home designs alone, over 400 scale models, and accumulated over 900 hours of lectures on diverse subject matters. All of this work during this time has been digitized and archived by Nathanael Dinwiddie. These, along with many other aspects of Fresco’s life, will be securely housed and presented within the website of the 501 (c)(3) NPO Jacque Fresco Foundation.
In 1980, Jacque Fresco and Roxanne Meadows purchased 10 acres of land in Venus, FL that later expanded to 21.5 acres. They experimented with Jacque’s building designs and processes constructing 3 residences and 7 additional structures comprising two shops, an editing suite, a lab (which now houses Fresco’s archives), a supply shed, and 2 domes that eventually housed hundreds of scale models. This was enhanced with ponds, bridges, decks, patios, wooded pathways and lush tropical landscaping. They developed videos, books, drawings, models, schematic illustrations, and photography, along with devising apparatus and set designs for filming these scale models. The footage was edited into documentaries to help bring to life Fresco’s visions of an alternative socioeconomic system he called a Global Resource Based Economy proposing a holistic, positive alternative to our most detrimental social issues.
As Jacque became acclaimed through various documentaries produced by other filmmakers as well, the center became a hub of activity where people visited, lived and contributed to the volume of work that Fresco and Meadows had produced such as computer Generated Images of Fresco’s designs were contributed, along with archiving Fresco’s body or work, setting up and contributing to social media platforms, to the maintenance of the grounds. People worldwide attended weekly Tours/Seminars presented by Jacque Fresco and presently carried out by Roxanne Meadows.
Early films (1998-2010)
When these early videos were produced there was no CGI nor computer animation. To represent Jacque Fresco’s designs, he and Meadows made drawings, but mostly, he demonstrated his concepts by producing hundreds of scale models and set designs, some of which were constructed to move during filming. It is a specialized hand-crafted technical skill that he passed on to Roxanne but is no longer needed with the advent of computer animation.
Welcome to the Future (1998) This video presents an overview of Fresco’s socioeconomic system. Understanding the catastrophic possibilities that could confront society, Fresco in his era felt we still had time to render obsolete the existential threats that we now face. He foresaw what would inevitably come if we did not share resources as common heritage, eventually eliminating artificial borders between nations. This video forewarned that our survival is dependent on a pristine ecology, a relevant education, intelligent design and resource management, free access to goods and services, and living within Earth’s carrying capacity.
Cities in the Sea (2002) This video demonstrates how sea structures could be important contributions to an almost limitless source of food, energy production, minerals, pharmaceuticals, and habitats for studying the reclamation of the ocean environment. Fresco felt that if intelligently managed, the creation of ocean communities could be among the twenty-first century’s greatest achievements. This video showcases a breathtaking array of his numerous oceanographic structures, their use, and potential.
Self-erecting Structures (2003) This piece illustrates the intelligent use of AI and cybernation to demonstrate the plausibility of worldwide reconstruction in the shortest time possible thus providing a more humane future. It demonstrates how automated systems assemble huge structures over canals that desalinate water. We see mega high-powered laser machines directed by satellites fuse the earth into molten magma-like material, contouring the ground into canals, highways, and waterways. Apartment buildings of foamed concrete are demonstrated being extruded, separated, transported to the site, and lifted into place. Automated catamarans place bridge components in locations where they interlock to form a complete bridge assembly and much more. It forewarns us that it is not technology to be feared but rather its abuse and misuse, putting the decision on us whether we use machines to elevate people everywhere or to serve our fears, prejudice, and power-seeking.
Designing the Future (2006) This is an overview of Fresco’s designs and concepts to attain a world of Global Stability. To help achieve this, It posits the building of entirely new circular cities. This would require overall planning, sophisticated construction techniques, ease of assembly and maintenance, simplicity, durability, and prefabricated elements that meet many different requirements for achieving total self-sufficient cities. This results in the minimum energy expenditure enabling more amenities for its inhabitants. A result of this approach is that only one-eighth of the city needs to be designed and then duplicated. The video delves into many aspects of this integrated city such as transportation, mass-produced housing, clean energy sources, bridges, and canals, to the central cybernated complex which displays in real-time the operational data of the entire city.
Future By Design (2006) Although this film was not produced and developed by The Venus Project it is an important documentary directed by William Gazecki. It was one of the first films produced about Jacque Fresco with a substantial budget and an acclaimed filmmaker. Of the many documentaries made about Fresco, while it is not the most comprehensive regarding his philosophy and socioeconomic system, it is the most salient in capturing his life’s story. Fresco described himself as a ‘social engineer’. In “Future By Design” he explores his childhood through the age of 90 (his age at that time). One gets a sense of the urgency he felt for the time constraints we had. He describes events that influenced him to spend his entire life conceiving, formulating, and relentlessly trying to update the social paradigm.
The Venus Project Tour (2010) This is an informative and educational experience where Fresco is filmed lecturing for several hours. It includes a walk around the grounds, explaining many of his scale models, and answering questions from the attendees.
World Tour (2010)
Fame came late in Jacque Fresco’s life. He had to wait until the internet was developed where novel, unorthodox, revolutionary ideas flowed freely. In 2010 at 94 years of age, due to attention drawn to him through several documentaries, Jacque Fresco and Roxanne Meadows embarked on a 19-country world speaking tour giving 24 lectures to full auditoriums.
Paradise or Oblivion (2012)
This documentary helps to detail some of the root causes of the systemic value disorders and detrimental symptoms caused by our current established methods of operation. It details the need to outgrow the dated and inefficient approaches of politics, economics, law, and business. It posits the need to achieve abundance where possible for an equitable distribution of goods and services assuring the well-being of humanity.
The Choice Is Ours (2016)
This is a four-part documentary. Part I provides an overview of cultural & environmental conditions that are untenable for a sustainable world civilization. It explores the determinants of behavior to dispel “human nature” as the default to our behavior, emphasizing environmental influences. Part 2 questions the values, behaviors, and consequences of our social structures, and illustrates how our global monetary system is increasingly insufficient to meet most people’s needs. It emphasizes that if we stay on our present course the familiar cycles of crime, economic booms & busts, war, and further environmental destruction are inevitable. Part 3 depicts Jacque Fresco’s model and system of thought to build an entirely new world from the ground up as he would call a “redesign of the culture”. Part 4 explains how it is not just architecture and a social structure in desperate need of change, but also our values that have been handed down centuries ago.
Center for Resource Management
In 2017, the Center for Resource Management (CfRM) was undertaken by numerous professional volunteers including architects, engineers, researchers, urban planners, agriculturalists, project managers, and more. They came together worldwide to meet virtually and generate competent technical design drawings and specifications for an R&D center. The objective was to act as a hub for international collaboration to arrive at the processes and protocols required to realize the granular components needed for resource management on a global scale – then the intention was to scale up.
The complex was designed for the size of a small university or research center with planned multiple structures, along with independent energy and food production to be self-sufficient. It took the shape of Jacque Fresco’s round cities as a holistic systems approach to architectural design for efficiency, resource conservation, ease of construction, and minimizing maintenance.
The work consisted of over 300 collaborative design meetings that have resulted in a broad set of documents, all of which are searchable and well-organized for current and future volunteers. They achieved minutes, notes, figures, graphs, spreadsheets, design drawings, reference images, team structure, work timelines and milestones, critical path items and other key data vectors accessible to registered volunteers on the cloud storage collaboration for the team. Standard meeting protocol required all meetings to be recorded for future review and auditing purposes, presently archived for future reference on YouTube.
Although funding prevented this project from concluding, it served as an insightful probe and exercise to understand the requisite conditions for implementing a large-scale construction project in service of a new value system. What was accomplished strictly by volunteers was unprecedented and impressive in its own right. Most of all, the experience gained in 1.5 years may be used to inform some aspects of other projects.