Architecture and its Imprint examines the relationship between a series of buildings by ‘modern’ and contemporary architects, and the books with which they have been associated, or in which they are published. The choice of the five individual studies is not intended to establish a sense of historical development, but rather to investigate the boundaries between architecture and the form of its publication, given that our first experience of buildings is often their representation in the media rather than direct experience of visiting, use or inhabitation.
Selected at intervals since the inception of ‘modern architecture’ and including its incorporation within developments of the recent past, the studies reflect on the relationship between building and publication to address:
- How particular publications, identified with an architect’s promotion of their work, conditions its subsequent (historical) interpretation
- The manner in which a recurrent conceptualization of a building (albeit published in different media) ingrains a critical consensus at odds with its original reception
- The notion of ‘cataloguing’ architecture as a design procedure, where a collector’s concern for archiving informs the evolution of the design of an architect’s library and the publication of a parallel ‘visual’ treatise
- The interaction between polemic and its divergent visualization in itinerant publications ‘framing’ the development of a strategy for an iconic city library
- How the publication of an architect’s oeuvre fabricates a sense of continuity at odds with a shifting practice of design
The five studies examine how publications support an architect’s (preferred or received) image and status, and question the veracity of their consequent representation of individual buildings. The book is a must for architects, and students of architecture, interested in the presentation and publicity of their own work.
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