We may think we know all there is about the most famous display of architecture to be mounted in the the U.S., the Museum of Modern Art’s landmark show, Modern Architecture: International Exhibition, curated by Henry-Russell Hitchcock and Philip Johnson in 1932. But there’s always more to dig up about this ultra-influential event and the fertile period from which it emanated, as we find in Partners in Design: Alfred H. Barr Jr. and Philip Johnson.
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.
Karl Henrik Nostvik's 1973 Kenyatta International Conference Center in Nairobi.
The dearth of literature on African architecture has long been a source of frustration for the continent’s design community.
Architects are, by nature, storytellers; they tell stories to their clients, to each other, and occasionally to a credulous public. Typically, these are stories about what buildings can do, or how the 'sense of a place' matters, or how their own professional or socio-artistic practice can deliver on such things.