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1. Delirious New York: A Retroactive
$23.07 $22.82 list($34.95)
2. Patterns of Home: The Ten Essentials
$150.00 $126.22
3. Banister Fletcher's A History
$40.95 $32.28 list($65.00)
4. A World History of Architecture
5. A View from the River
$80.00 $59.67
6. Byzantine Monuments of Istanbul
$200.00 $180.00
7. Tall Building Structures : Analysis
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8. Transparency
$38.95 $27.71
9. Rethinking Architecture: A Reader
$34.65 $38.50 list($55.00)
10. The New American House 4: Innovations
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11. A Pattern Language: Towns, Buildings,
$29.70 $29.65 list($45.00)
12. Tudor Style : Tudor Revival Houses
$82.90 $72.18 list($95.00)
13. The Interior Dimension: A Theoretical
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14. Erich Mendelsohn: Architect 1887-1953
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15. From Bauhaus to Our House
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16. The HOME House Project : The Future
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17. Theoretical Anxiety and Design
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18. Istanbul 1900: Art Nouveau Architecture
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19. Palm Springs Weekend: The Architecture
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20. The State of Architecture at the

1. Delirious New York: A Retroactive Manifesto for Manhattan
by Rem Koolhaas
list price: $35.00
our price: $28.00
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Asin: 1885254008
Catlog: Book (1994-12-01)
Publisher: Monacelli Press
Sales Rank: 10228
Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars
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In this fanciful volume, Dutch architect Rem Koolhaas, founder of the Office for Metropolitan Architecture (O.M.A.), both analyzes and celebrates New York City. By suggesting the city as the site for an infinite variety of human activities and events--both real and imagined--the essence of the metropolitan lifestyle, its "culture of congestion" and its architecture are revealed in a brilliant new light. "Manhattan," Koolhaas writes, "is the 20th century's Rosetta stone . . . occupied by architectural mutations (Central Park, the Skyscraper), utopian fragments (Rockefeller Center, the U.N. Building), and irrational phenomena (Radio City Music Hall)." Filled with fascinating facts, as well as photographs, postcards, maps, watercolors, and drawings, the vibrancy of Koolhaas's poignant exploration of Gotham equals the heady, frenetic energy of the city itself. Anyone who loves New York will want to own this book. ... Read more

Reviews (5)

5-0 out of 5 stars best koolhaas ever, man
koolhaas is a bit over-the-top for me, but this I think is is best work. it's worth checking out if only for the story of coney island. once you get past blisteringly pretentious phrases like "coney island is a fetal manhattan", you'll find it gloriously entertaining as both a narrative and theoretical work.

5-0 out of 5 stars the culture of congestion
This is by far Koolhaas's most accessible work, as it is rooted so clearly in detail from the city's past. Further, the book is simply brilliant. His take on urban history is to Jane Jacobs what Socrates is to common sense. New York is a special case of modernism that sprang from a special constellation of poltiical and technological forces that collectively create a cultural "big-bang" at the turn of the century. Read it. Blow your mind.

5-0 out of 5 stars A great starting point.
An easily digestible read filled with delicious facts about the big apple. This book can change the way one sees New York forever. Be it from a street level, or from an intellectual level. "Delirious New York" helps to rediscover Manhattan, and it helps to discover the idea of Manhattan in places far away from "The City".

This publication is a perfect starting point for any exploration into the past or the future of urbanism, architecture, and of course New York City and the people who helped to shape this ever growing marvel.

A must read, and a perfect gift for anyone who is even remotely touched by New York.

5-0 out of 5 stars Mandatory Reading
I originally read the first edition of this book when it came out in the 70s. It completely transformed (or formed) my thinking about the city, the processes by which a city develops and grows, and the innate playfulness of the city as a form. Despite its deceptive simplicity, I believe that this book will emerge as one of the essential texts of the twentieth century on urban design. Read it!

4-0 out of 5 stars Compelling History of Manhattan
A romp through New York's sometimes jaded history with a view to uncover the roots of the modern metropolis and the singular element devised by architects to inspire (amuse?) the masses - the Skyscraper. The book looks at Coney Island as the testing ground of the Skyscaper, Manhatten as further exploration of the Skyscaper which is trialed in the name of symbols of a propserous future, economic rationale and pushing the envelope to its limits and finishes with Office of Metropolitian Architecture's own experimental projects in New York. A very compelling history of a complex city. ... Read more

2. Patterns of Home: The Ten Essentials of Enduring Design
by Max Jacobson, Murray Silverstein, Barbara Winslow
list price: $34.95
our price: $23.07
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Asin: 1561585335
Catlog: Book (2002-08-27)
Publisher: Taunton Press
Sales Rank: 8555
Average Customer Review: 3.94 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

Clearly written and profusely illustrated, Patterns of Home brings the timeless lessons of residential design to homeowners who seek inspiration and direction in the design or remodel of their homes. Patterns of Home promises to become the "design bible" for homeowners and architects. The 10 patterns described in the book -- among them, "capturing light" and "the flow through rooms" -- are drawn from hundreds of principles and presented with clarity by the authors, renowned architects who have designed homes together for more than 30 years. Insightful tours of 33 homes also bring the essential design concepts to life. This book will jump-start the design process and make the difference between a home that satisfies material requirements -- and one that meets the personal needs of a home. "Patterns of Home gives us the tools to make our houses truly wonderful places to live." -- Sarah Susanka ... Read more

Reviews (18)

3-0 out of 5 stars not as good as "a pattern language"
My husband and I disagreed on this book. He loved it, 10 easy steps with photos. This surprised me, because he's more analytical and I would have thought that he'd prefer the careful data presentation of "A pattern language". I realized that I like to do in-depth research and plan, he likes to see the actions and results. I much preferred Alexander's "A pattern language", and I found this book shallow and derivative. He liked the photos of the design principles being applied in "patterns of home", and he liked having architectural decree as to what design patterns were most important. He immediately grabbed onto a few concepts and started distorting a house plan we'd been working on for months and which we had both agreed upon . This design had already incorporated key design issues from Alexander's book. After viewing sprawling disjointed modern houses depicted in "Patterns of Home" he began pitching a house site we'd already rejected on our acreage simply because it allows sprawl. I regret ever showing him this book and I sincerely hope that it's effects wear off quickly.

5-0 out of 5 stars Appropriate Design Thought Engine
The authors of this book have taken the best of Alexander's "A Pattern Language", and combined wonderfully designed and excellently photographed homes to publish an inspiring and thought provoking book. Frankly, the world has too many "500 House Plans" types of books. This one describes the logic, reason, and common sense that involves the interlocking of ten basic patterns that could make any basic design more successful. As a residential architect, I consider this among my five top-rated books.

5-0 out of 5 stars Beautifully written, accessible, helpful
For those who may not have the patience to work through "A Pattern Language," this book distills the most important elements and illuminates key aspects with photographs. I found it helpful as a suplement to "A Pattern Language". I think these books will improve any design.

3-0 out of 5 stars Not exactly what you hoped for.
Based on the 10 most important building patterns from the book "A Pattern Language", by Christopher Alexander (the book every architect should memorize) your expectations just don't seem to get met with this book. There are lots of good photos and lots of well designed houses, but you keep waiting for something to pop out at you when you are reading it, but it just doesn't happen. When reading the book "A Pattern Language" the small simple illustrations let your imagination flow, whereas in this book, the photo's of finished homes seem to shut off your own creative juices. Also the homes are mostly all huge and expensive. Good for architects designing mansions, but making you wonder how the patterns would have looked in a smaller home.

Since not everyone thinks alike, I am sure some people will get allot more out of this book than I have. And if this is your type of book then I think "The Not So Big House" series of books by "Sara Susanka are much better. Also if you have not read "A Pattern Language", by Christopher Alexander please do before you read any other architecture books.

2-0 out of 5 stars Glossy Photos Replace Substance of "A Pattern Language"
Skip this book. Instead get "A Pattern Language" which is the quintessential work of Christopher Alexander. Alexander is the real genius behind the "Patterns" of this book. There is almost nothing new in this book "Patterns of Home."

In the late 1960's and 1970's Alexander and his group (including two of these authors), formed the Institute of Environmental Structure in Berkeley, California. Alexander was clearly the spiritual and intellectual leader of this effort. "A Pattern Language" is a compilation of that thorough effort. Alexander et al's book remains the most important treatise ever on the subject of Architecture. It disseminates a clear and concise identification of basic patterns that make a house a home, for example, pattern 115 of 253 - Courtyards that Live. In addition, "A Pattern Language" is written for us, in the hope that "we the people" can use the patterns to guide the development of wonderful homes and communities. Alexander's book is accessible to all of us.

These co-author's of Alexander's great book include two of the authors of "Patterns of Home." These guys are sidekicks and it shows. For example, in the forward to this book, they acknowledge working on this book part-time while engaging in a full-time architectural practice. They didn't put a life-force effort into this book, although it appears the photographers did. The illustrations and photographs are almost exclusively of high end giant homes in the price range of $300 to $500 and up per square foot! The vast majority of people do and will live in homes built to a budget of $100 psf or less. In short, this is a picture book for coffee tables that shows what an architect can do with an open-ended budget.

I think I was dissapointed most with narrow scope of the photographs. As with another reviewer, I noted that the authors showed the patterns exclusively in new, contemporary, upscale California style homes, neglecting better illustrations of the essential patterns that can be easily found in other styles of homes, in older homes, or in homes from other areas of the world.

Although I don't believe the author's intended, but this book is an elitist book for dreamers. The homes shown in this book are accessible to a tiny minority of ultra-rich people. If you, the reader, prefer picture type books, you're better off with Sara Susanka's "The Not So Big House" and others of her series. Her design approach is more accessible to a larger segment of the population. Best of all though, try "A Pattern Language" a truly wonderful book accessible to all of us. It will forever improve you architectural mindset.

Regards, Steve ... Read more

3. Banister Fletcher's A History of Architecture
by Banister Fletcher, Dan Cruickshank
list price: $150.00
our price: $150.00
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Asin: 0750622679
Catlog: Book (1996-09-11)
Publisher: Architectural Press
Sales Rank: 159777
Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

The 20th edition of Sir Banister Fletcher's A History of Architecture is the first major work of history to include an overview of the architectural achievements of the 20th Century. Banister Fletcher has been the standard one volume architectural history for over 100 years and continues to give a concise and factual account of world architecture from the earliest times.

In this twentieth and centenary edition, edited by Dan Cruickshank with three consultant editors and fourteen new contributors, chapters have been recast and expanded and a third of the text is new.
* There are new chapters on the twentieth-century architecture of the Middle East (including Israel), South-east Asia, Hong Kong, Japan and Korea, the Indian subcontinent, Russia and the Soviet Union, Eastern Europe and Latin America.* The chapter on traditional architecture of India has been rewritten and the section on traditional Chinese architecture has been expanded, both with new specially commissioned drawings
* The architecture of the Americas before 1900 has been enlarged to include, for the first time, detailed coverage of Latin America and the Caribbean
* The book's scope has been widened to include more architecture from outside Europe
* The bibliography has been expanded into a separate section and is a key source of information on every period of world architecture
* The coverage of the 20th century architecture of North America has been divided into two chapters to allow fuller coverage of contemporary works
* 20th century architecture of Western Europe has been radically recast
* For the first time the architecture of the twentieth century is considered as a whole and assessed in an historical perspective
* Coverage has been extended to include buildings completed during the last ten years
* The coverage of Islamic architecture has been increased and re-organised to form a self contained section

This unique reference book places buildings in their social, cultural and historical settings to describe the main patterns of architectural development, from Prehistoric to the International Style.Again in the words of Sir Banister Fletcher, this book shows that 'Architecture ... provides a key to the habits, thoughts and aspirations of the people, and without a knowledge of this art the history of any period lacks that human interest with which it should be invested.'

*Winner of the International Architecture Book Award, The American Institute of Architects Book of the Century.

*THE source book for the historical development of architecture
... Read more

Reviews (6)

5-0 out of 5 stars The Best Complete Book on Western Architecture
Without a doubt, this text is the Quintessential Gold Standard for introductory Western Architecture. A must have for anybody who is serious about learning about how Western Architecture has evolved over time, and with little if any bias. Its only weak area is with architectural development in Asia and South/Central Meso America. Other than that, this is my third copy of the text and it just keeps getting better. Believe me when I say, this is one book you may never want to loan out, for it may not get returned. I know, it's happened to me once already.

5-0 out of 5 stars The Best
This is the best book written on architecture history. I have used it many times and I'm not an architect nor an architecture student. You can't go wrong with this for anyone who enjoys architecture or an architect. A wonderful gift!

5-0 out of 5 stars Full of historical detail
Mine is a new 1975 edition (which was a small fraction of the new price). It is as much a history of the world--and an incredibly detailed one--as a history of architecture. It opens each of its 40 chapters with a discussion of a civilization or era, then describes the buildings very matter-of-factly. Sometimes opinions emerge: Louis Kahn is cited as an example of a flash-in-the-pan; FLLW's Guggenheim is criticized as impractical.

The photos are top quality B/W, often very old. Its real strength is early architecture; by chapter 35, it is only finishing up the Rennaissance. The authors are so knowledgeable, the writing so effortless, all others pale by comparison.

I don't think there's much of a market for these books outside of libraries, but those who read it will marvel at its erudition.

5-0 out of 5 stars It's just so.....juicy!
For over a century, this has been THE classic study of the history of architecture. It is a work of art in it's own right and worth owning simply for the joy of hefting it's not inconsiderable weight and browsing once in a while - even as a layman. The text is extraordinarily readable and the illustrations are a delight. It's so packed full of information - believe me, even if you have only a limited interest in architecture you will learn a great deal that will surprise you from this book! Enthusiasts for classical and other older branches of architecture may wish to consider purchasing second-hand copies of older editions - they're somehow nicer, and devote less space to the debased modern form of the art. (Yes, I'm biased and proud of it!:) Of a reasonable collection of architectural history books, (including several larger-format, beautifully-illustrated coffee-table books in the modern style)this book is easily my favourite. It has class, style and above all, character. Buy it!

5-0 out of 5 stars Wow! Wow! Wow!
If there ever was a book on the history of architecture this is it! So very well documented with numerous pictures and chronologies. Wow! the mother of all architecture books-well worth the price. ... Read more

4. A World History of Architecture
by MarianMoffett, LawrenceWodehouse, MichaelFazio, Marian Moffett, Lawrence Wodehouse, Michael Fazio
list price: $65.00
our price: $40.95
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Asin: 0071417516
Catlog: Book (2003-09-12)
Publisher: McGraw-Hill Professional
Sales Rank: 62392
Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (1)

5-0 out of 5 stars A cornerstone for any comprehensive architecture library.
Professors Fazio, Moffet, & Wodehouse have assembled a book which is impressive in its scope and thoroughness. It covers each subject with a depth appropriate for an academic environment, but remains approachable to the average reader. The photographs and plates are numerous and richly illustrate each topic throughout the volume. Expect this book to become a standard text in the field. ... Read more

5. A View from the River
by Jay Pridmore, Hedrich Blessing
list price: $14.95
our price: $14.95
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Asin: 0764913336
Catlog: Book (2000-06)
Publisher: Pomegranate Communications
Sales Rank: 580867
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6. Byzantine Monuments of Istanbul
by John Freely, Ahmet S. Çakmak
list price: $80.00
our price: $80.00
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Asin: 0521772575
Catlog: Book (2004-03-15)
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Sales Rank: 313470
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Book Description

This book is about the Byzantine monuments of Istanbul, most notably, Haghia Sophia. The remains of the land and sea walls, the Hippodrome, imperial palaces, commemorative columns, reservoirs and cisterns, an aqueduct, a triumphal archway, a fortified port, and twenty churches are also described in chronological order in the context of their times.These "monuments" are viewed in relationship to the political, religious, social, economic, intellectual and artistic developments of the Byzantine dynasties. ... Read more

7. Tall Building Structures : Analysis and Design
by Bryan StaffordSmith, AlexCoull
list price: $200.00
our price: $200.00
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Asin: 0471512370
Catlog: Book (1991-07-03)
Publisher: Wiley-Interscience
Sales Rank: 235742
Average Customer Review: 4 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

Examines structural aspects of high rise buildings, particularly fundamental approaches to the analysis of the behavior of different forms of building structures including frame, shear wall, tubular, core and outrigger-braced systems. Introductory chapters discuss the forces to which the structure is subjected, design criteria which are of the greatest relevance to tall buildings, and various structural forms which have developed over the years since the first skyscrapers were built at the turn of the century. A major chapter is devoted to the modeling of real structures for both preliminary and final analyses. Considerable attention is devoted to the assessment of the stability of the structure, and the significance of creep and shrinkage is discussed. A final chapter is devoted to the dynamic response of structures subjected to wind and earthquake forces. Includes both accurate computer-based and approximate methods of analysis. ... Read more

Reviews (1)

4-0 out of 5 stars Compendio de sistemas estructurales
Es muy agradable poder contar con un texto que contenga una descripción completa de la mayoría de las tipologías y sistemas estructurales disponibles en el abanico del diseñador. Es una herramienta fundamental para orientar al estudiante contribuyendo a la formación de un "criterio" profesional de selección. Para el profesional es un manual de consulta permanente. Para el profesor un auxiliar muy valioso para la enseñanza-aprendizaje del comportamiento estructural. Como docente de facultad de arquitectura y profesional del diseño estructural considero que es un texto para tener muy a mano tanto en la bilbioteca personal como en la de las Universidades.

Ing. Daniel Quiroga Mendoza Argentina ... Read more

8. Transparency
by Colin Rowe, Robert Slutzky, Bernhard Hoesli
list price: $35.95
our price: $23.73
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Asin: 3764356154
Catlog: Book (1997-04-01)
Publisher: Birkhauser Boston
Sales Rank: 448704
Average Customer Review: 4 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (4)

5-0 out of 5 stars Not out of print
This book is not out of print and is available from the publisher. It has been published in Germnan and in English so if you want an English version make sure you order the correct edition.

1-0 out of 5 stars Impenetrable
Rowe's obtuse, convoluted writing style buries his ideas in a morass of verbal sludge, rendering them totally inaccessible to the layman and barely comprehensible to the typical architecture student. After encountering this book several times in the course of various classes, I was surprised to realize how comparatively simple the ideas it contains are. In the typical fashion of upper-level humanities academia, however, Rowe hides his point behind impossibly twisted sentences and an onslaught of outside references that seems designed more to impress the reader with Rowe's own wide-ranging knowledge than to enlighten. The ideas of this book could be condensed to a short essay, and the only thing lost would be the page count.

5-0 out of 5 stars a must for students
I'm a student, Transperency: the book gives you a new way to think about architecture, outlining a basic characteristic in architecture that transcends major movements. Crucial to the understanding of buildings. best of all. .. Colin Rowe is really easy to read.

5-0 out of 5 stars A Re-release of the classic article on visual perception.
This article defined visual analysis of two dimensional architectural and urban design compostion. ... Read more

9. Rethinking Architecture: A Reader in Cultural Theory
by Neil Leach
list price: $38.95
our price: $38.95
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Asin: 0415128269
Catlog: Book (1997-04-01)
Publisher: Routledge
Sales Rank: 15241
Average Customer Review: 3 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

This invaluable reader brings together the core writings on architecture by key philosophers and cultural theorists of the Twentieth Century.

This careful selection of the very best theoretical writings offers a refreshing take on the question of architecture and provocatively rethinks many of the accepted tenets of architectural theory from a broader cultural perspective. ... Read more

Reviews (2)

1-0 out of 5 stars Mis-reading architecture
I read this book and was instantly struck by the mis-representation and editing of the theories of some of the centuries most important thinkers. The discourse is limited to a one-dimensional view of architectural theory that seems to dismiss the most potent ideas of critical theory and radical critique. The book is structured around themed chapters containing several extracts with a logic of "this is a critique of this" in a rather naive way. The author's ommission of Heidegger's thinking is bizarre and his critique of Loos misses out the crucial influence of the intellectual milieu of early 20th century Vienna (Kraus, Wittgenstein etc.). Some interesting lesser known figures are brought to light (Kracauer for example)and there is some fantastic material here extracted from larger works, but be warned! this is a book with its own agenda.

5-0 out of 5 stars Rethinking Compilations
This book is a compilation of essays on architecture from a very distinctive and unique point of view, which shows people involved with architecture or its related fields the perspective of recognised sociologists, communicators, semiologists et cetera, and which constitutes a very valuable tool for a deeper understanding of our everyday proceedings in such a globalizing practice as the art of designing works of art where we can dwell. ... Read more

10. The New American House 4: Innovations in Residential Design and Construction
by James Grayson Trulove
list price: $55.00
our price: $34.65
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Asin: 0823031764
Catlog: Book (2003-07-01)
Publisher: Watson-Guptill Publications
Sales Rank: 52821
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11. A Pattern Language: Towns, Buildings, Construction (Center for Environmental Structure Series)
by Christopher Alexander, Sara Ishikawa, Murray Silverstein
list price: $65.00
our price: $40.95
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Asin: 0195019199
Catlog: Book (1977)
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Sales Rank: 3358
Average Customer Review: 4.81 out of 5 stars
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The second of three books published by the Center for Environmental Structure to provide a "working alternative to our present ideas about architecture, building, and planning," A Pattern Language offers a practical language for building and planning based on natural considerations. The reader is given an overview of some 250 patterns that are the units of this language, each consisting of a design problem, discussion, illustration, and solution. By understanding recurrent design problems in our environment, readers can identify extant patterns in their own design projects and use these patterns to create a language of their own. Extraordinarily thorough, coherent, and accessible, this book has become a bible for homebuilders, contractors, and developers who care about creating healthy, high-level design. ... Read more

Reviews (52)

5-0 out of 5 stars Placemaking Guide
One can find the answers to most of life's little (and big) problems in this classic work. It does everything from helping one determine why the backyard just doesn't feel right to describing the problems with sprawl. I hesitate to label it as an architectural work because it can be so much more. Certainly, it illustrates how architecture can play a much larger role in shaping our lives than it has during the past fifty years.

The format of the book is effective in that it allows one to follow the connections between various design rules/patterns that might otherwise not be obvious. The use of these "links" within the book could have been a source of inspiration for web designers. This book will appeal just as much to the lay person as it does to the legions of architectural professionals who use it as a guide on a frequent basis.

5-0 out of 5 stars Required reading for designers, planners and architects
Part 2 of 3 part series.

This book is the dictionary for A Timeless Way of Building. The Oregon Experiment is a case study of the use of these ideas to plan a college campus.

This book is about functional design for humans rather than design for design's sake. It directly refutes the real estate industry's insistence on neutral design for quick sale (which is the industry's goal - not the goal of a homeowner!) It promotes design which fits the needs and desires of the user, not the developer or architect. The philosophy involves the users heavily in the process of design, permitting integrated design without requiring comprehensive knowledge of all interacting factors on the part of the designers, it is a way of modularizing the design process into smaller, comprehensible units which can be understood and discussed in a useful way.

You will not be disappointed in reading these books.

Yes, it's dated a bit, especially in it's language approach to social issues.

Yes, it's Utopian, but not impractical.

No, all of the patterns do not apply to all people in all places, but then, they are not intended to.

What is important is the basic premise: That physical environment design can either promote community or divide people. That there exist basic patterns of interaction between people, buildings, roads and environment.

No, you cannot just change your entire community overnight into a utopia (mores the shame) however, these books can help to redefine how your community grows and develops to improve the quality of life for everyone in the community.

All of the research is fairly old, but it is research into basic human actions and reactions to their surroundings - not something which is subject to a great deal of change - examples cover several thousand years.

If you're tired of strip malls, rampant development for development's sake, neighborhoods without character or community, irritating traffic patterns, multiple hour commutes, buildings which are uncomfortable to live and work in or just interested in improving your corner of the world, read these books and apply some of the principles wherever you feel they will fit your life.

I own multiple copies and recommend it highly.

5-0 out of 5 stars This book changed the way I look at buildings ... and life!
My fascination with Christopher Alexander's work began with "The Timeless Way of Building," but increased tenfold upon discovering his inexhaustible classic, "A Pattern Language." At over a thousand pages (I think,) "A Pattern Language" is an encyclopedic study of what makes buildings, streets, and communities work -- indeed, what makes environments human.

Alexander and his co-authors present us with over two hundred (roughly 250) "patterns" that they believe must be present in order for an environment to be pleasing, comfortable, or in their words, "alive." The patterns start at the most general level -- the first pattern, "Independent Regions," describes the ideal political entity, while another of my favorite patterns, "Mosaic of Subcultures," described the proper distribution of different groups within a city. The patterns gradually become more specific -- you'll read arguments about how universities should relate to the community, the proper placement of parks, the role of cafes in a city's life. If you wonder about the best design for a home, the authors will describe everything from how roofs and walls should be built, down to how light should fall within the home, where your windows should be placed, and even the most pleasant variety of chairs in the home. An underlying theme of all the patterns is that architecture, at its best, can be used to foster meaningful human interaction, and the authors urge us to be aware of how the houses we build can help us balance needs for intimacy and privacy.

They admit that they are uncertain about some of the patterns -- they indicate their degree of certainty using a code of asterisks placed before the pattern. For each pattern, the authors summarize the pattern in a brief statement printed in boldface, and then describe it at length, drawing upon a variety of sources to give us a full sense of what they mean: these "supporting sources" include an excerpt from a Samuel Beckett novel, papers in scholarly journals, newspaper clippings, etc. Most patterns are accompanied by a photograph (many of them beautiful and fascinating in their own right) and all are illustrated by small, casual hand-drawings. Taken together, "A Pattern Language" is an extraordinarily rich text, visually and conceptually.

As I said in the header of this review, "A Pattern Language" has changed the way I look at buildings and neighborhoods -- I feel like this book has made me attuned to what works, and what doesn't work, in the human environment. I'm constantly realizing things about buildings and streets that this book helped me see -- things that make people feel at home, or feel "alive," in their surroundings, or conversely, things that make people uncomfortable. And the book makes me think differently about life because it showed me how our well-being depends so much upon the way our buildings fit, or don't fit, us as UNIQUE INDIVIDUALS.

5-0 out of 5 stars Different Meanings for Different People
While ostensibly a book about city planning, architecture and building construction, A Pattern Language is a treasure chest offering so much more:

Academics will respect this 1171-page treatise for its thoroughly researched (eight years' work by six co-authors during the 1970s) and eminently logical (mathematically motivated) analysis, arriving at an optimal hierarchical configuration of our living space (253 self-consistent "patterns"), based on the simple premise that social function should determine physical form.

Idealists will praise the book for its wonderfully comprehensive utopian prescription specifying how our society--cities, neighborhoods, houses, rooms, alcoves and even trim and chairs--should be designed and built.

Curious types will marvel at the richness of this book as a launching pad for exploring new realms--for example: Land usage (how countryside in England differs from public parks and private farms in the U.S.), transitional space (how outdoor-indoor and public-private boundaries are as important as the buildings and rooms themselves), small window panes (how large pane windows paradoxically do not bring us closer to nature), etc.

Romantics will be moved by the contrasting luminescence in Tapestry of Light and Dark, the warmth of The Fire, and the retelling in Marriage Bed of how Odysseus was reunited with his wife, Penelope, after 20 years of separation.

Pragmatists will take the best ideas from the collection--The Flow Through Rooms, Light on Two Sides of Every Room, Alcoves--and use them with abandon in the most opportunistic way in designing, building and remodeling homes.

Members of the status quo will see this book as the underground manifesto of a threatening movement, an attempt by Berkeley anti-architect radicals to apply social engineering to thrust their liberal values (e.g., communal bathing, composting of human waste, banning of skyscrapers and chain stores) on our present society that is "just fine the way it is, thank you!"

And realists will criticize this book for falling short, failing to tell us in any truly practical sense how to fix the problems inherent in our convenient, automobile-centric, impersonal, profit-oriented social structure of today.

3-0 out of 5 stars Modern Architecture Ends Here
Not quite the research it pretends to be, more a polemic against Modernism in its final days, recycling many of the themes of the 19th Century Arts and Crafts movement. If you don't object to reading things like cladding should be layered but stucco is OK because it's "layered internally", you might enjoy it. ... Read more

12. Tudor Style : Tudor Revival Houses in America from 1890 to the Present
list price: $45.00
our price: $29.70
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0789307936
Catlog: Book (2002-11-23)
Publisher: Universe Publishing
Sales Rank: 38874
Average Customer Review: 4 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

The Tudor house is one of America's keystones-- a type of home that has attracted homeowners for more than a century. Its basic elements-- the steep gabled roofs, mullioned windows made of leaded glass, and half-timbering-- are instantly recognizable and iconic. Tudor Style showcases the wide variety of Tudor homes and how American Tudor style differs from their English counterparts.

Renowned photographer Paul Rocheleau and architectural historian Lee Goff have traveled across the United States, from the suburbs of metropolitan New York to Lake Forest, Illinois, from St. Louis to Los Angeles, capturing the unique Tudor styles each geographic location offers. The Tudors featured in the book range from modest homes to grand estates, making this a perfectly accessible book for all Tudor homeowners and aficionados. In addition to displaying thearchitectural structures of these buildings, Goff examined the history of these houses, why they became so popular in the United States, and what their appeal is today.

The first book ever on this wildly popular style, Tudor Style will delight architecture enthusiasts who have been desperately waiting for a book on this favorite architectural style.
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Reviews (2)

3-0 out of 5 stars compositionally nice but superficial
This book is long overdue. There's really no exclusive published works in print on American Tudor Revival architecture, except for this. It is a beautifully photographed and organized book, with nice fonts and well-balanced photographs. There are a few wholes, though. Styles and geographic concentrations aren't focused on well enough. The section on Philadelphia Tudor Revival ingores a rich and very diverse Tudor variety in favor of a few French country houses. Also, the 1950s and 1970s mixes of ranches and split-levels with Tudor sensibilities are ignored, either out of distaste or pretension. The modern Tudor section is dominated by one very large McMansion with mock Tudor references. In all, the book is unfit for study but is basically a very pretty coffee table book.

5-0 out of 5 stars Finally! ...a book for Tudor style enthusiasts!
Excellent book of Tudor houses. A sampling of the best homes across America. Brief descriptions/history. No floorplans, but beautiful color photos of exteriors as well as interiors. You will love this book. My all-time favorite Tudor home is included: Stan Hywet Hall. ... Read more

13. The Interior Dimension: A Theoretical Approach to Enclosed Space
by Joy MoniceMalnar, FrankVodvarka
list price: $95.00
our price: $82.90
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Asin: 0471289027
Catlog: Book (1991-10-01)
Publisher: Wiley
Sales Rank: 452095
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14. Erich Mendelsohn: Architect 1887-1953
by Regina Stephan
list price: $75.00
our price: $75.00
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Asin: 1580930344
Catlog: Book (1999-12-01)
Publisher: Monacelli Press
Sales Rank: 1178797
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15. From Bauhaus to Our House
list price: $14.00
our price: $10.50
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Asin: 055338063X
Catlog: Book (1999-10-05)
Publisher: Bantam
Sales Rank: 24432
Average Customer Review: 3.61 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

Walter Groppius, granddaddy of steel and glass, conceived his architectural vision in the rubble of WW I and the decadence of Weimar in the decade after.

His doctrine found fertile soil in America, where it was time to adopt a clearly defined and suitable representative architecture.

Tom Wolfe, author of THE PAINTED WORD and THE RIGHT STUFF, treats us to a chronicle of the trends that ultimately brought us the ubiquitous and baffling "glass box" of modern commerce.

"Delightfully witty, biting history of modern architecture...scintillating high comedy of big money, manners and massive manipulation of public taste." (Publishers Weekly) ... Read more

Reviews (23)

5-0 out of 5 stars Great! but...
Wolfe hits the nail on the head with most of this book. But I also agree with the reviewer who says that he generalizes too much. Granted, he does give Wright due praise, but he seems to lump the rest of the modernists together as if they were all the same (Kahn is treated as just another International disciple and Aalto is conveniently left out altogether). I disagree with a lot of his analysis of early modern architecture, and I happen to think some of the ideas of the Bauhaus guys were very important. But any Corbu-bashing is music to my ears; his late work in particular is just hideous and anyone who doesn't admit at least that much has to be hiding behind pretentious theories or hero-worship. The real prize of the book is Wolfe's excellent take on postmodernism. He basically confirms the suspicion that today's artists are pulling the wool over our eyes, and he exposes the blatant stupidity and intellectualization of Venturi and his cronies. A great read, lots of fun!

3-0 out of 5 stars Tom misses the target
This is Wolfe's second book dedicated exclusively to the fine(r) arts. The first one was "The Painted Word" where he skewers the art world. That was a *great* book. This one is not.

In this book, Tom misses a good opportunity to skewer the architectural world. (Whether or not such world should be skewered is irrelevant to Tom Wolfe. His goal in life appears to be to criticize all aspects of modern culture. Is he a Republican? :)

His major mistake is his oversimplification of the history of modern architecture. By failing to critically distill the difference between movements, he paints himself in a corner of contradictions. He praises Frank Lloyd Wright, but fails to mention that Frank incorporated elements from the Bauhaus school Wolfe loves to hate. He criticizes some of these "paper" architects for designing buildings that are never built, but fails to mention Lloyd Wright did the same too. (In all fairness, Frank did not get famous because of these drawings, unlike Le Corbusier.)

In "The Painted Word", Wolfe took several movements that to the untrained eye appeared different (compare Rothko and Pollock with Warhol) and found the common thread. He then was able to skewer the entire modern art world by criticizing the common thread.

On the other hand, because most of modern architecture (at least during the period the book covers) is organically related rather than a seemingly-obvious break with prior movements, Tom cannot skewer architecture and its follies in the same manner. Instead, he has to attack modern architecture as a whole. Well, that was more than he could chew, so the book is muddy at best. Too bad. It could have been a fun book to read.

2-0 out of 5 stars Wolfe tries to make us care about Modern Architecture
Tom Wolfe focuses a jaundiced eye on the sphere of 20th Century Architecture in this slender volume. More a historical summary than an artistic statement, Wolfe examines how socio-economic forces led to the formation of the European art compounds of the twenties, and follows how they led to the state of architecture in America as it existed when this book was written, at the close of the 1970's. The major players are portrayed as arrogant, untalented, and self-serving theorists who have no interest in pleasing the hard-working, money-grubbing bourgeoisie, who after all, are paying to have these structures built, and there is no attempt to garner our sympathy by humanizing them in any way. Fans of Wolfe will already be familiar with this formula, and may still appreciate his caustic views on the topic, but this book is rather too superficial to be good scholarship, and as entertainment, it's only as captivating as its subject matter.

As a writer, Wolfe is Wolfe, and can not be faulted for his irreverent style, his mastery of sarcasm, and his delightful ability to ferret out anything that smells of authoritarian doubletalk. Himself a master of the written word, he is never shy about ridiculing the nonsense that has often passed for scholarship in this field, but is this the fault of the writers, or merely an inadequacy of language itself? As Frank Zappa has pointed out, "writing about music is like dancing about architecture", and writing about architecture probably can't be much more effective. A structure has to be seen to be appreciated, and the dozen or so plates included in this book seem far too few for so essentially visual a medium. In particular, Wolfe's basic premise, that all the architecture of the past fifty years is dull and repetitive, would have been better served by page after page of ugly, cookie-cutter building projects that passed as great architecture.

Disclaimer: no one old enough to actually remember the seventies has any less knowledge of modern architecture than this reviewer, who not only has relatively little interest in the subject, but is notoriously unobservant at the macro level, generally. The relevance, of course, is that anyone who has strong opinions (positive or negative) about modern architecture, or any architecture, for that matter, will surely find this book more interesting than I did.

5-0 out of 5 stars Don't bother if you LIKE modern architecture
For the rest of us who find cold, modern architecture to be...well...cold and modern, this book will briefly explain why you feel that way...and why some people seem to like it so much. It is a book that is clearly only skimming the surface (look at it sideways, how could it purport to be otherwise) but it's a fun surface to skim. I also wouldn't read this if you're a devout post-modernist. You'll find uncomfortable parallels between Wolfe's jabs at architecture and jabs others make a po-mos. A fun read that will enlighten someone who never hopes to be an "expert" on architecture, but would like to know why some God-awful, very expensive buildings ever got built.

4-0 out of 5 stars Modern Architecture debunked
I live a few blocks from the marble lollipops at 2 Columbus Circle: Huntington Hartford's Gallery of Modern Art. And as I read the impassioned articles in the New York Times about its impending destruction, I have wondered to myself "What is this strange building, and why do so many people care so deeply about it?".

Tom Wolfe is just the man to tell me. And while he's at it, he put a whole field of endeavor into perspective.

I grew up disliking the "modern" residences that disfigured Haddonfield New Jersey in the 1960s, but being too insecure to say so, and feeling vaguely uneasy about Waterfalls and puzzled about The Fountainhead. Wolfe to the rescue!

It's short; it's sharp; it's funny; it's topical, still; it's entertaining. Buy it, read it and you'll never look at modern architecture in the same way again. ... Read more

16. The HOME House Project : The Future of Affordable Housing
list price: $24.95
our price: $16.47
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0262524325
Catlog: Book (2005-03-01)
Publisher: The MIT Press
Sales Rank: 38882
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Book Description

Imagine affordable homes that are both well-designed and environmentally friendly, better for the families who live in them and for the planet. The HOME House Project brings such imagining closer to reality. This book chronicles a multi-year national design initiative aimed at addressing issues of design, affordability, and sustainability in housing. Launched by the Southeastern Center for Contemporary Art (SECCA) in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, this project challenged designers and architects to imagine a world in which sustainable and environmentally friendly materials, technologies, and techniques were considered important elements of housing for low- and moderate-income families.

A SECCA-sponsored open competition in 2003 drew 440 entries from the United States and six other countries, all using Habitat for Humanity's three- and four-bedroom house plans as a point of departure for the design of affordable and environmentally friendly housing. This book, published in conjunction with a traveling exhibition, documents the 25 prize-winning designs as well as fifty other selected submissions with 396 color illustrations. The accompanying text includes Michael Sorkin's essay connecting democratic values to quality of housing, Ben Nicholson's satiric critique of American excess, Steve Badanes's insights on the social responsibilities of architects, and HOME House Project Director David Brown's overview of the project and its continuing evolution.
... Read more

17. Theoretical Anxiety and Design Strategies in the Work of Eight Contemporary Architects
by Rafael Moneo
list price: $39.95
our price: $26.37
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Asin: 0262134438
Catlog: Book (2004-06-01)
Publisher: The MIT Press
Sales Rank: 794286
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Book Description

The internationally acclaimed architect Rafael Moneo is known to be a courageous architect. His major works include the Houston Museum of Fine Art, Davis Art Museum at Wellesley College, the Stockholm Museum of Modern Art and Architecture, and the Potzdammer Platz Hotel in Berlin. Now Moneo will be known as a daring critic as well. In this book, he looks at eight of his contemporaries--all architects of international stature--and discusses the theoretical positions, technical innovations, and design contributions of each. Moneo's discussion of these eight architects--James Stirling, Robert Venturi, Aldo Rossi, Peter Eisenman, ?varo Siza, Frank Gehry, Rem Koolhaas, and the partnership of Jacques Herzog and Pierre De Meuron--has the colloquial, engaging tone of a series of lectures on modern architecture by a master architect; the reader hears not the dispassionate theorizing of an academic, but Moneo's own deeply held convictions as he considers the work of his contemporaries. More than 500 illustrations accompany the text.

Discussing each of the eight architects in turn, Moneo first gives an introductory profile, emphasizing intentions, theoretical concerns, and construction procedures. He then turns to the work, offering detailed critical analyses of the works he considers to be crucial for an informed understanding of this architect's work. The many images he uses to illustrate his points resemble the rapid-fire flash of slides in a lecture, but Moneo's perspective is unique among lecturers. These profiles are not what Moneo calls the "tacit treatises" that can be found on the shelves of a university library, but lively encounters of architectural equals.
... Read more

18. Istanbul 1900: Art Nouveau Architecture and Interiors
by Diana Barillari, Ezio Godoli
list price: $75.00
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0847819892
Catlog: Book (1996-10-01)
Publisher: Rizzoli Publications
Sales Rank: 899902
Average Customer Review: 3 out of 5 stars
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This book is the first visual and historical study of the development of Art Nouveau architecture, and it surprisingly places Istanbul among such cities as Paris, Brussels, and Vienna as one of the great capitals of the style. This unprecedented study traces the transformation of Istanbul between the end of the 19th century and the beginning of World War I. Discussed in depth are the Ottoman Revival and beaux-arts and other European influences on the style, as well as its foremost practitioners. Many never before published photographs, plans, and drawings of Istanbul's palaces and luxurious homes make this a unique view into the architecture of the city in particular and of the Art Nouveau style in general. ... Read more

Reviews (2)

Istanbul is the world's most beautiful city, a cosmopolitan gem where East meets West and where the magic and squalor of the 1001 Nights pop out around any corner. The Art Nouveau chapter of Istanbul's architectural history is a very significant one, and captures the visitor's imagination about how life in that city must have been in the Belle Epoque. However, the book is proven too mediocre for the city. The Italian authors narcissistically devote a big part of the book to Raimondo D'Aronco, a compatriot of theirs whose pompous architectural plans remind one of the feathers worn by Italian policemen and military. Thankfully, not many of his proposed buildings were actually built. There is a scandalous misrepresentation of Greek architects of Istanbul. The Greeks were not passers-by, the way Italians were. The Greeks have been living in Istanbul since the 7th c BC, since even before Istanbul existed! I don't mean to disregard the importance of the Turkish architects or of those Western architects whose beautiful buildings adorn the city, but it is quintessential to note that the elitist Belle Epoque architecture seen all over Pera and Galata, as well as many villas along the Bosphorus and the Princes' Islands were designed by Greek architects and to investigate their work in a more thorough manner. One should not forget, that 1 out of the 3 residents of Istanbul in 1900 was an ethnic Greek and it is only logical to assume that the Greeks took considerable interest to building their homes and offices. Often, the city homes and offices were functional buildings, while the Bosphorus and Islands' residences were more intricately designed houses destined to leisure. Still, they all retained a distinct turn-of-the-century art nouveau style. Unlike the occasional visiting architect from Europe who would create a singular extravaganza, Istanbul Greek architects were meeting the needs of the local bourgeois, and in this sense, their work must be examined in greater depth, as it will reveal many social aspects of life in Istanbul around 1900. I would also like to stress the sad lack of references to sources of information and maps. This book could be a book of reference for architects and lovers of Istanbul, but it ends up being a mere coffee table book, a collection of photos from the trip two Italians took to the city. I give the book 2 stars, just because the photos are so beautiful and make one want to go back there at once. So sad, this book...

4-0 out of 5 stars A well kept secret revealed
This book reveals the fact that Istanbul among with Vienna, Brussels and Barcelona is one of the capitals of Art Nouveau. Some wonderful examples of the period blended with touches of Orient are hidden between the mosques and Byzantine remains. This book is the best source for the art nouveau architecture that has survived in Istanbul. So a little more to covered bazaar and Blue Mosque, when you visit Istanbul the next time. ... Read more

19. Palm Springs Weekend: The Architecture and Design of a Midcentury Oasis
by Alan Hess, Andrew Danish
list price: $40.00
our price: $26.40
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Asin: 0811828042
Catlog: Book (2001-04)
Publisher: Chronicle Books
Sales Rank: 27762
Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
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Palm Springs Weekend could have been just a breezy look at the celebrity culture of this California desert playground. Instead, Alan Hess offers an authoritative yet refreshingly nondoctrinaire view of the various ways European and American architects--some famous, some not--adapted the canons of modernism to suit the desert climate, landscape, and lifestyle. With evocative vintage photographs and an engagingly retro design by Andrew Danish, this is one of the most enjoyable popular architecture books in years.

The story begins with "the panorama of brown rock... peppered with ever-changing shadows and the unexpected desert plants that turn this great natural wall into a tapestry of texture and color." Then came the wealthy industrialists and Hollywood royalty who wanted vacation homes and were more or--at least initially--less amenable to modern design. Car culture and casual living morphed the international style into new silhouettes and textures fit for a modern oasis.

Swiss émigré Albert Frey designed minimalist houses "like tents staked in the desert." Richard Neutra's famous Kaufmann House has polished glass walls, flat, floating roofs, and luxury finishes, while John Lautner's Elrod House--seen in the James Bond film Diamonds Are Forever--is a futuristic concrete cave. Tract homes by William Krisel and Dan Palmer for the Alexander Company offered a mass-market modernist solution, with butterfly roofs and patterned concrete block walls crisply defined by the intense sun.

By the early '50s, local projects also included civic and commercial buildings. Memorable nonresidential projects range from William Cody's Huddle Springs restaurant, with its bold angled beams, canvas awnings, and open plan, to Victor Gruen's City National Bank, on which a sweeping curved roof reminiscent of Le Corbusier's Ronchamp chapel meets the desert opulence of gold filigree. --Cathy Curtis ... Read more

Reviews (3)

5-0 out of 5 stars Palm Springs Local
well as an avid collector of Mid-Century artifacts. I was very impressed by the book. Palm Springs is an amazing city and to just drive around in your car and look at the fascinating architecture is so awesome. To me being here and loving that style of design is just a bonus. But when some tourist saw me driving my beloved 62 Valiant wagon yelled out of their window "We saw you in Palm Springs Weekend" I asumed that they ment with my band. Until they said "With this car" That is when I realized The photograph I had candidly posed for a year before. I got a hold of the book and sure enough there I was. It makes me proud to be in the book. And I hope that Alan Hess and Andrew Danish Have great success with their careers. And I pray that the book will open peoples mind to the likes of Albert Frey and Richard Neutra and the many other designers who have shaped the deserts amazing style which needs to be preserved and not demolished as society grows. An awesome book and a must have for every Mid-Century modern enthusiust.

5-0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable historical and architectural tour
While I initially bought Palm Springs Weekend as a coffee table book, it is much more substantial -- a great read, with the historical perspective necessary to appreciate the architectural legacy. Hess and Danish provide a tour from the beginnings of the desert resort in the 1930s, through the Hollywood migration of the 1940s and '50s and continue with the decline and then reawakened interest in modernism. And yes, it is a handsome book to have out for guests.

PSW earns high marks for balance, not focusing unduly on celebrity homes but instead providing a survey of significant commercial buildings, architectural trends and the personalities (Cody, Frey, the Alexanders) that brought the modernistic vision to life. Because of this, most readers interested in architecture will find it more useful than glamour-shot books of multi-million dollar homes behind gated walls. Several of the buildings noted are readily observable to visitors.

In addition, the authors illustrate the aspects of the culture that spawned Palm Springs. It is a remarkable journey because it is only recently that we have begun to view the 1950's, for example, as a period that has left us 'historic artifacts' worth appreciation. Less affected than neighboring LA or San Diego by overwhelming population growth, Palm Springs is something of a monument to the way things were. Hess and Danish do not overlook this.

While it is disappointing to see the cookie-cutter tract homes being built as the desert communities expand eastward, Palm Springs retains many of its unique homes, many of which are accessible to those of moderate means. PSW helps us appreciate the imaginative architects of the 'midcentury oasis', in their successes and even manages to evoke a bit of appreciation for some of the eyesores. A must read for anyone restoring or considering the purchase of a special home in this fascinating place.

5-0 out of 5 stars More than a weekend
If you like mid-century architecture you'll love this book. Showcases not only on the 'finest' (and familiar) works of some extraordinary architects/builders in this resort town, but also offers up a bit of kitsch too. Often neglected but valuable nonetheless and is part of what makes Palm Springs the town it is. Very well written with lush photographs. I came away with insights into the making of an American resort town. Almost as good as being there. ... Read more

20. The State of Architecture at the Beginning of the 21st Century (Columbia Books of Architecture)
by Bernard Tschumi, Irene Cheng
list price: $29.95
our price: $19.77
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1580931340
Catlog: Book (2004-02-01)
Publisher: Monacelli Press
Sales Rank: 30626
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Book Description

In March 2003, Bernard Tschumi convened forty of the world’s architectural designers and theoristsóElizabeth Diller, Peter Eisenman, Zaha Hadid, Steven Holl, Rem Koolhaas, Greg Lynn, Winy Maas, Thom Mayne, Ben van Berkel, Mark Wigley, Alejandro Zaera-Polo, and many othersófor a conference at Columbia University. The exceptional array was asked to predict the conversations and directions of architectural practice in the twenty-first century. Speakers addressed the categories of current architectural discourseóform, aesthetics, material, detail, politicsóand questioned their future validity. Other topics included architects’ obsession with the "detail," the possibility of practicing a politics of material, the definition of an avant-garde urbanism, the importance of form beyond its aesthetic value, and whether architecture can directly influence the social world. The State of Architecture brings together manifestos, musings, and meditations to capture the key polemics raised by this extraordinary convocation of thinkers. ... Read more

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