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architecture books- recommendations?

edited March 2008 in Q and A
hi, i'm a first year architecture student (UTS) looking to educate myself. any suggestions for good books (or even films)? i don't really want to buy something that will help me get marks, i just want stuff to inspire me.
so far i have this INSANE design p0rn at home (!!!!!!)
thanks in advance


  • edited 12:27PM
    this one's all words but rips along creating good mindscenes.
    a most unusual casuo-formal book
    .... 'Wow Hows the House Now' by Monte Latham
    ... try looking on 9dont forget the au)
  • edited May 2008
    Construction Into Design
    By James Strike

    This one's a bit light on but not too bad as that makes it a quick easy read while still being thourough enough for a student who can then delve deeper elsewhere.
    It is about how manufacturing and technological changes have affected the way buildings are designed, from 1790's to 1990's.
    It was originally written as lecture notes which were roughly cobbled together but that only affects the chapter introductions and the flow, not the content. For a more thourough examination it contains a fabulous bibliography and a list of sources that a search in the era of the internet should well reward.
    If you believe like I do, that designing a structure should take into account the enviroment into which it is placed AND the materials from which it is built, then this text should give you a really good introduction to the materials aspect of the design equation.
  • edited 12:27PM
    Try "From Bauhaus to Our House" by Tom Woolfe
  • edited 12:27PM

    I wrote it. Let me tell you a bit more.

    This book explains housing like never before. Houses are a huge beautiful factor in the world chaos and harmony. People wishing to newly create or modify their dwelling arrangement raise a range of queries. Urban sprawl and homelessness also pose query. Town planning and sociology often leave us in wonder. Explanation of housing increases enjoyment of our home; through knowing where our community and the and we are; and also in being able to act in housing to meet the world. All can act with renewed enthusiasm in home-making and many can act refreshed in professional planning.

    The first focus of this book is the activity interface that bonds both nomad and settler with domestic contraption; the activity of housing and the returning action of houses. This interface accounts for a huge quantity of our doings and environmental conditions. The interface touches many aspects; personal, social, cultural, historical, ecological, aesthetic, persona, emotions, facility, health, money.

    A house is often a huge thing to the home-maker. Sprawl is huge. It is all part of our life. How do we manage it? How does it manage us?

    Who is accountable for the good, the bad and the ugly of the state of settlement; lounge room to city, natural to urban landscape? Your house relates to your vote and your effervescence, joys and frustrations.

    I believe this book is of value to artists, architects, sociologists, environmentalists, psychologists, economists, dwellers, builders, planners etc. People tend to think; "House” is architecture. This is a fallacy, it is more, as is clear from the book. This work combats the 'silo effect' - the lack of connection among educational subjects and also among government departments.
  • edited 12:27PM
    every first year should own the following>
    towards a new architecture_ le corbusier
    constructing architecture_ andreas deplazes
    smlxl_koolhaas and bruce mau
  • edited 12:27PM
    Touch This Earth Lightly. Glenn Murcutt in his own words.
    By Philip Drew
  • edited 12:27PM
    is that the murcutt book that costs $1,750..? sooo in touch with this earth.
  • edited June 2008
    alison and peter smithson - from the house of the future to a house of today
    eds. dirk van den heuvel and max risselada
  • edited 12:27PM
    No Andrew, it's the Philip Drew book, which is unavailable I have found out as it is out of print but you could propably find it second hand for considerably less than $1,750.
    If I remember correctly, the library copy I read had a recomended retail price of about $30 on the back, but I could be wrong, but not by $1,720 dollars.
    By the way, if there is a Murcutt book for $1,750 it might be worth it. I found a book on furniture joinery from the 1890's that was $2,500 and I so wish I had the money.
  • edited June 2008
    I've got Touch This Earth Lightly By Philip Drew and I keep it with A Vision of Britain: a Personal View of Architecture by Prince Charles. Both in hard cover and in pristine condition.

    I'll be listing them together on eBay ................ and I'll throw in a free iPod.;-)
  • edited 12:27PM
    If you're serious Mark, I'll give you ten dollars now plus postage for the Phillip Drew. Answer me here and I'll activate my email for you.
  • edited 12:27PM
    Seriously, I do have both books but $10 is well below the 'market' rate for TTEL.
  • edited 12:27PM
    Well then, I had better look on Ebay and find out what the market rate is. at the moment.
  • edited June 2008
    I'll tell you when it is listed.

    Another good one is 'The Built, the Unbuilt and the Unbuildable: In Pursuit of Architectural Meaning by Robert Harbison'. Quite valuable if you are of the 'Just because you can, does not mean you should' brigade.................or you 'design' without the aid of construction knowledge............or a fixed budget.

    And 'How Buildings Learn: What Happens After They're Built by Stewart Brand', a little bit 'coffee table' but shows how users adapt buildings to suit 'today'.

    'The Italian Townscape by Ivor De Wolfe' shows that great buildings need not be built from 'blue board' and 'clean' slick acrylic coating systems and can be allowed to age......... Mind you 'blue board' allows you to see 100 years of aging in 2.
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