Film Project: Rubén Abruña “La casa ausente/The Absent House”


We are sharing with you a call for support for the documentary La casa ausente [The Absent House]. This film is about documentary about the sustainable work of architect Fernando Abruña Charneco, FAIA, a disciple of inventor Buckminster Fuller, an early environmental activist. Director Rubén Abruña explains the documentary La casa ausente is “a testimony that it is possible to design and create green and beautiful architecture that is harmonious with a healthy planet.”

Description: La Casa Ausente/The Absent House is the story of the first sustainable house in Puerto Rico and the Caribbean. The house is totally independent from the electric, water and sewer authorities. It derives its energy from the sun, it satisfies its water needs from the rain, and recycles all human wastes. In the process of presenting the house, the film also delves into the sustainable work of architect Fernando Abruña Charneco, a disciple of Buckminster Fuller, the Da Vinci of the XX Century. Abruña Charneco has designed many sustainable buildings, like La Casa Ausente, by doing more with less (which Fuller referred to as ephemeralization). Abruña Charneco also designed the first sustainable public school in Puerto Rico, and recently launched the prototype of a solar-electric car. Parallel to this work, he has engaged in futuristic architecture, designing for the next century, and subverting the concept of housing that modern society has traditionally embraced.

The director points out that the sustainable work of Abruña Charneco “confirms that we have to change our habits in order to cope with the challenges of climate change” and that considering that “40% of all gases that cause climate change come from buildings . . . architects have a crucial responsibility.”

Rubén Abruña (Puerto Rico) has produced, directed, and edited documentaries, commercials, educational videos, and news in New York, San Juan, and Miami. The passion for the documentary began early in his career when he studied under the tutelage of the pioneers of documentary film Jean Rouch and George Stoney. His work has earned awards including the Wolfson Media Award for South of Brooklyn, the highest grossing film in the history of PBS in Miami, the Aurora Film Festival Gold Award for What About Coral, and the Blue Ribbon Award from the American Film Festival for The Battle of Vieques, among others. He has also edited programs for Discovery Channel Latin America, PBS and ABC News, among others.

For more information on how to contribute to this project through Indiegogo, see

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