Category: reviews

El Croquis 208: DOGMA familiar/unfamiliar 2002–2021 (2021): Review

El Croquis 208: DOGMA familiar/unfamiliar 2002–2021 (2021): Review

By Leonard Ma

As one of the most prominent architecture publications in the world, El Croquis has long been a prestige showcase for the upper echelon of architectural practices. Its publication format, with each issue typically devoted to a specific practice, lends El Croquis more the air of an exclusive monograph series than… Read More

Sigurd Lewerentz: Architect of Death and Life (2021): Review and Excerpts

Sigurd Lewerentz: Architect of Death and Life (2021): Review and Excerpts

By Caroline Voet

The new monograph Sigurd Lewerentz: Architect of Death and Life has arrived, published by ArkDes and Park Books to accompany the exhibition that opened in Stockholm in October 2021 curated by ArkDes director Kieran Long with scenography by Caruso St John Architects (open until August 2022). As an excellent preparation… Read More

Hélène Binet: The Intimacy of Making, Three Historical Sites in Korea (2021): Review

Hélène Binet: The Intimacy of Making, Three Historical Sites in Korea (2021): Review

By Helen Thomas

What is a myth, today? I shall give at the outset a first, very simple answer, which is perfectly consistent with etymology: myth is a type of speech.– Roland Barthes, Mythologies, 1957 This seemingly simple book is a thought-provoking collection of things. There is a lot of room for implication… Read More

The Hidden Horizontal. Cornices in Art and Architecture: Exhibition Review

The Hidden Horizontal. Cornices in Art and Architecture: Exhibition Review

By Cammy Brothers

Architecture is never an easy topic for exhibitions, because the level of knowledge and pre-existing interest of the public is difficult to gauge. A show devoted specifically to a single architectural detail, seen across a historic panorama, is even more challenging. But this is the ambition of ‘The Hidden Horizontal:… Read More

Christoph Schlingensiefs Operndorf Afrika (2020): Review

Christoph Schlingensiefs Operndorf Afrika (2020): Review

By Erandi de Silva

The Opera Village is a complex located thirty kilometres from the capital of Burkina Faso that was initiated by the late German film, theatre, and opera director, author, and action artist, Christoph Schlingensief and envisioned as a site centring African artists and enabling cross-cultural creative exchange. The ever-expanding project combines… Read More

Notations (2016): Review & Excerpt

Notations (2016): Review & Excerpt

By Richard Hall

Notations is a collection of pamphlets in a box. Curating the content in this manner has allowed the editors to present the publication as a physical representation of their thesis that the notebook is a device for the cultivation of individual worlds. The plurality is important. The pamphlets are collected… Read More

Piranesi Unbound (2020): Review

Piranesi Unbound (2020): Review

By Nicholas Savage

There is much to admire in this sequel to Heather Hyde Minor’s Piranesi’s Lost Words (Penn State, 2015), which sets out to ‘explore new territory by reimagining his artistic production in terms of his books’. Whereas Lost Words drew attention to Piranesi as an author who combined texts and images… Read More

Besides, History (2018): Book Review

Besides, History (2018): Book Review

By Stan Allen

It has a lot to do with misinterpretation. There is no real truth in history. Everything you see belongs to the past and you interpret it in your own way. Its related to visiting buildings, but also to an abstraction in how you re-represent architecture, appropriating it in your own… Read More

Luc Deleu & T.O.P. OFFICE: Future Plans, 1970–2020 (2021) – Review

Luc Deleu & T.O.P. OFFICE: Future Plans, 1970–2020 (2021) – Review

By Victoria Easton

Future Plans is one of those titles with double and ambiguous meanings. Not exactly as twofold as the most famous ‘The Architecture of the City’ but maybe leaving us equally free to choose. Is the term ‘future’ to be considered as an adjective or a subject? Does this book thus… Read More

Jesús Vassallo’s Epics in the Everyday (2019): Review & Excerpt

Jesús Vassallo’s Epics in the Everyday (2019): Review & Excerpt

By Helen Thomas

Review The compelling question of reality, or rather its representation as realism presented as an aesthetic category, acts as the organising principle of this interesting book. This is an investigation of the relationship between photography, architecture and the problem of realism, as its subtitle explains. Its author, Jesús Vassallo, immediately… Read More

68½ degrees, Sverre Fehn and the Nordic Pavilion: Review & Excerpt

68½ degrees, Sverre Fehn and the Nordic Pavilion: Review & Excerpt

By Niall Hobhouse

Review By preserving the trees on the site within his pavilion in the Giardini, Sverre Fehn offered Venice an insight into a unique Nordic sensitivity towards nature and the environment. He tempered the harsh Mediterranean sun to evoke the horizontal light of the Baltic through a spectacularly innovative technical design… Read More

The Zilsel Thesis: A Review of Strata: William Smith’s Geological Maps (2020): Review

The Zilsel Thesis: A Review of Strata: William Smith’s Geological Maps (2020): Review

By Stan Allen

In a series of essays and lectures developed between 1939 and 1943, the philosopher of science Edgar Zilsel identified three distinct sources of knowledge in the Renaissance. In the late-medieval period, writes Zilsel, the traditional learning associated with the universities was still theological and scholastic in character. The texts preserved… Read More