In A Genealogy of Modern Architecture, the prolific historian, critic, and theorist Kenneth Frampton presents a documentation of a course he used to teach, which involved comparative critical analyses of 14 pairs of more or less canonical modern buildings completed between 1924 and 2007.
When Robert Venturi’s Complexity and Contradiction in Architecture was published 50 years ago, Vincent Scully announced in the introduction that it was “probably the most important writing on the making of architecture since Le Corbusier’s Vers une Architecture” of 1923.
Art of the Airport Tower, by Carolyn Russo. Smithsonian Books, November 2015, 176 pages, $45. This big, beautiful photographic survey of 85 historic and contemporary air traffic control towers from around the world and throughout history was published to coincide with an exhibition at the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum.
At a time when bookstores are a nostalgic throwback to the past, and Rizzoli, known so well for its architectural monographs, has just published Kim Kardashian West: Selfish, these six serious tomes present a brave face to the future.
If you’ve ever felt like a slacker, neither of these books will help. You’ll know even before you open them—one weighs 4.4 pounds; the other, more than 7—that they represent thousands of hours of painstaking effort.