Statesman book souvenirs

The books that I was granted to save from the office recycling, in my opinion, deserve a separate mention in this blog, due to interesting content in their own right. From a similar subject area, these books should read well in parallel.

‘Notebook’ by Andrea Garuti is a colour A3 hardback filled with a grungy, textured and thoroughly urban paint and photographic collage. The introduction (titled Sim Cities: Andrea Garuti’s Urban Vision’) begins its prose with the following:

‘The title of one of Le Corbusier’s most accessible books is When the Cathedrals Were White. Surely the architect was thinking of a time before photography and its complications.
We can define the relationship between photography and architecture as:
Expedient, Reverential, Confounded, Hostile, Territorial, Suspicious, Conspiratorial, Delirious.
Andrea Garuti’s photographs are a perfect example, summing up as they do most of the possible attitudes at work in the confrontation between two mediums obsessed with time, and especially with the strange collision of instantaneity and eternity.’

Like this the author Lyle Rexer continues in a way that makes me seriously and enviously reconsider why I did not take this avenue for my dissertation! As it is, I can now indulge myself with purely admiring them instead of writing about them.
By contrast, Rowan Moore’s ‘Why We Build’ is a text that ‘explores the making of buildings from conception to inhabitation and reveals the paradoxical power of architecture: it looks fixed and solid, but it is always changing in response to the lives around it’… How was I going to help myself after that?
Both of these books have served to remind me how much I admire and enjoy learning about architecture- in relation to both my discipline and in its own right as it cuts through others.  The tone is very approachable so far, and has been easy to pick and down on the tube or train. Looking forward to slotting it into the art/design/reference/magazine/book stack on my desk, as permanent reminders of the last 4 weeks!

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