Yesterday I ended up at a couple of bookstores, and while I don’t usually blog about buying books, yesterday was just too much fun to keep to myself.
Ruth Rendell, An Unkindness of Ravens (thanks, m-l)
Sara Paretsky, Bleeding Kansas
Dorothy Sayers, The Complete Stories
Roger Dixon and Stefan Muthesius, Victorian Architecture
Emil Kaufman, Architecture in the Age of Reason: Baroque and Post-Baroque in England, Italy, and France
Eight issues of The Tuilieries Brochures from 1931 and 1932 with outstanding photography:
French Architecture as Source Material
Provincial Architecture of Northern Franc
Some Small Houses from French Villages
Formal Design in Minor French Buildings (see Amazon listing)
Dijon–Capital of Burgundy
Saulieu of the Morvan
An Architect Revisits France
Falaise–The Heart of Normandy
L.C. Kalff, Creative Light
Arnold Lewis, American Victorian Architecture
The book division of the National Geographic Society, The Builders: Marvels of Engineering (1992 with the World Trade Center on the cover)
A little heavy on the architecture, yes. I love looking at architecture books, but that’s not usually something I’m willing to spend money on. But they all came from the dollar table at the Antiquarian’s book sale, and were 25% off to boot. How could I resist?
A nice assortment. The first thing I started reading was the Rendell whodunit (or whydunit as the case may be). From page two: “Joy Williams took him into the front room that she called the lounge. There were no books.” Somehow, you know this is not going to end well.
[The rest of the photos are clickable.]
Moving on to The Builders (1992), which I picked up because it had photos of pyramids, and bridges and cathedrals, on the front cover is a photo of the World Trade Center, with another inside. These photos give me an odd moiré pattern when I look at them with various browsers, but are very nice viewed with zoom. And yes, I know they load slow, but they also have high resolution.
The cover photo is supposed to be “framed by an Alexander Calder sculpture”. Maybe World Trade Center Stabile (Bent Propeller)?–here are before and after pictures of the Calder sculpture.
[Note: the link is no longer working, but I will leave it up in case someone can find it in google cache–I have had no luck–or the wayback machine after a suitable amount of time has passed. In the meantime, no more Ms. Nice Guy with polite links to images of unknown copyright status. Here are some images of the statue, if you see your image here leave a message and I will credit you.]
Creative Light is out of print. This page demonstrates how light principles work in a church sanctuary.
Corb’s “Chapel of Ronchamp” uses semi-cylindrical towers to channel the light to the wall behind the altar.
His monastery at La Tourette uses “light cannons” to direct light.
The “Tulierries” pamphlet series has striking architectural photographs of various areas in France. (And except for one or two issues, these are totally out of print and unobtainable.) This page is from Provincial Architecture of Northern France:
From Formal Design in Minor French Buildings:
Why again should we take French architecture of this particular period rather than that of an earlier time? Precisely because the charm of the French Formal style depends upon intrinsic excellence of design rather than upon the charm of softening line and surface texture resulting ;from the decay of age as in the farmhouse type. It is the spacing and balance of the windows and their relation to the wall surface texture resulting from the decay of age as in the farmhouse typel It is the spacing and balance of the wqindows and their relation to the wall surfaces that pleases us, not the irregularities of hand work. The wall surfaces are as true as the machine-minded American workmen could make them; the lines of the ridge and the eave do not sag despondently.
In the last analysis is not this fad of living in imitation primitive farmhouses, surrounded carefully by all modern conveniences, a little ridiculous?”
But the photos are still incredible.
This one is from Some Small Houses From French Villages:
This type of photography simply doesn’t exist any more. Typically this type of photo was done with a 4X5 large format camera. In these days when the SLR has suddenly been replaced by the digital camera, who knows what the future of this type of photography will be.
As for the buildings, give me the key and I’ll be ready to move into any one of them.