- Tapa blanda: 408 páginas
- Editor: University of Chicago Press; Edición: 2nd ed. (22 de julio de 2003)
- Idioma: Inglés
- ISBN-10: 0226423220
- ISBN-13: 978-0226423227
- Valoración media de los clientes: Sé el primero en opinar sobre este producto
- Clasificación en los más vendidos de Amazon: nº798.310 en Libros en idiomas extranjeros (Ver el Top 100 en Libros en idiomas extranjeros)
Why Architecture Matters: Lessons from Chicago (Inglés) Tapa blanda – 22 jul 2003
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Reseña del editor
For more than a decade, Pulitzer Prize-winning "Chicago Tribune" architecture critic Blair Kamin has been writing fiery, intelligent essays on the state of contemporary architecture. His subjects range from high-rises to highways, parks to public housing, Frank Lloyd Wright to Frank Gehry. "Why Architecture Matters" collects the best of Kamin's acclaimed columns, offering both a look at America's foremost architectural city and a taste of Kamin's penetrating, witty style of critique.
Nota de la solapa
Why Architecture Matters collects the best of Kamin's columns, including his acclaimed series advocating the intelligent development of Chicago's lakefront. The columns are organized thematically, providing an accessible and provocative view of architecture in the 1990s, from soaring skyscrapers to vibrant immigrant neighborhoods, troubled public housing projects and sprawling suburbs. Because Chicago serves as a barometer of national design trends, these writings shed new light on American architecture and urbanism during a decade that Kamin labels "The Nervous Nineties"a period of unparalleled affluence and underlying anxiety, of soothing retro buildings and provocative new ones that express the frenzied state of modern life. As Kamin demonstrates in his piercing, often witty, critiques, Chicago perfectly represents the era's contradictions, rediscovering itself as a city but losing its architectural nerve.
An architecture critic's most important role, Kamin believes, is to articulate standards that help people judge the quality of their surroundings, contrasting the esoteric theory of how buildings and public places are supposed to work with the unpredictable reality of everyday life. Throughout Why Architecture Matters, he pursues the question of how people actually use space, and how architects and planners might better design it to enrich human experience. Architecture matters, Kamin argues, because it simultaneously reflects and affects how we live. "Every building," he writes, "is a new piece of the evolving metropolis, a new layer of the ever-changing urban collage. This collective work of art forms an unflinching record of who we are and what we do."
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This book is a compilation of columns and articles Blair Kamin wrote for the Chicago Tribune. He writes passionately (and well) about architecture, and the book is definitely worth reading. But the title is all wrong. If you want to know "Why Architecture Matters," don't buy this book. It won't tell you. If Kamin has a thesis about why architecture matters, he never comes out and says what it is.
What you will get, if you buy this book, is excellent commentary on the state of contemporary design, particularly as it relates to that most architectural of cities, Chicago. Kamin covers his beat well, and has opinions which are, as Michael Feldman would say, "well reasoned and insightful." Particularly powerful is his extended analysis of how architecture does and does not impact the social pathology of public housing in Chicago. This is great stuff--well researched, well reasoned and well written. Kamin looks past the conventional wisdom about the evils of high-rise public housing to what's really going on there--and whether what's going on has anything to do with the architecture or not. As I said, great stuff.
If he'd just called the book "Architecture Matters," I'd have given him 5 stars. The "Why" in the title begs for a thematic core that, unfortunately, is just not there.
There were many opportunities to visit Chicago,
so I really wanted to know about many history & even behind stories, too...
Because I'd need to teach in my country.
This book is exactly that I wanted..
Blair Kamin is not just a great critic with sharp insight: he's a terrific writer whose articles are seasoned with wit and a highly readable eloquence. Upon reading his work, it is no surprise that he won a Pulitzer Prize for criticism. It helps to be familiar with Chicago's landmark buildings, but that is not a prerequisite to learning some important lessons. This book is not just pleasure reading for architecture students, but for anyone who cares deeply about the architectural decisions being made in his or her city. By frequently reviewing proposed projects, Kamin goes on the offensive, raising some keen questions that go alarmingly unasked by the developers and politicians involved. This approach, with the resulting influence he wields, has altered the course of events in Chicago many a time (though, sadly, not always). One wishes he had the final approval on all the city's projects before groundbreaking. Architecture, as he says, is the "inescapable art" we all have to live with on a daily basis, and Kamin's activist criticism encourages us to learn from past mistakes in order to form a more livable city.