Modern Architecture Since 1900 / Edition 3

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Since its first publication in 1982, Modern Architecture Since 1900 has become established as a contemporary classic. Worldwide in scope, it combines a clear historical outline with masterly analysis and interpretation. Technical, economic, social and intellectual developments are brought together in a comprehensive narrative which provides a setting for the detailed examination of buildings. Throughout the book the author's focus is on the individual architect, and on the qualities that give outstanding buildings their lasting value.

For the third edition, the text has been radically revised and expanded, incorporating much new material and a fresh appreciation of regional identity and variety. Seven chapters are entirely new, including expanded coverage of recent world architecture.

Described by James Ackerman of Harvard University as "immeasurably the finest work covering this field in existence", this book presents a penetrating analysis of the modern tradition and its origins, tracing the creative interaction between old and new that has generated such an astonishing richness of architectural forms across the world and throughout the century."

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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble
Curtis's expansive and exhaustive look at the greatest architecture of the last century is widely considered a seminal architecture work. Effectively placing the century's major movements and most important masters in historical context, Curtis allows us to see not only where we've been but where we're going.
Library Journal
This third edition of the 1982 original has been greatly revisedseven additional chaptersto reflect new developments since its initial release. The volume's well-detailed text is buttressed with 650 color and black-and-white illustrations. This should be a standard volume in all architecture collections.
Now established as the standard work on 20th-century architecture, this text combines a general outline of the growth of a modern tradition with analysis and interpretation of individual buildings. The author blends practical, aesthetic, and social dimensions while emphasizing the formal and symbolic aspects of the art. Three of seven new chapters are included at the end of a section on recent world developments, placing contemporary architecture in a historical and cultural perspective. Annotation c. by Book News, Inc., Portland, Or.
From the Publisher

The book is excellent value." – Architects’ Journal"

As close to a definitive guide to the architecture of our century as we yet have." – Sunday Times"

A book of this length and depth is an unimaginable achievement. . ." – Building Design"

Comprehensive, up—to—date and very readable." – Sunday Telegraph"

This should be a standard volume in all architecture collections." – Library Journal"

The clearest and most authentic survey to appear in English. . . Essential reading, indeed breathtaking reading" – Architecture New Zealand"

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780714835242
  • Publisher: Phaidon Press
  • Publication date: 6/27/1996
  • Edition description: REV
  • Edition number: 3
  • Pages: 736
  • Sales rank: 667,513
  • Product dimensions: 8.75 (w) x 10.00 (h) x 2.25 (d)

Meet the Author


William Curtis has won worldwide acclaim for his architectural writing. His books include Le Corbusier: Ideas and Forms and Denys Lasdun, both published by Phaidon."

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Table of Contents

Prefaces 7
Introduction 11
1 The Idea of a Modern Architecture in the Nineteenth Century 21
2 Industrialization and the City: The Skyscraper as Type and Symbol 33
3 The Search for New Forms and the Problem of Ornament 53
4 Rationalism, the Engineering Tradition and Reinforced Concrete 73
5 Arts and Crafts Ideals in Britain and the U.S.A. 87
6 Responses to Mechanization: The Deutscher Werkbund and Futurism 99
7 The Architectural System of Frank Lloyd Wright 113
8 National Myths and Classical Transformations 131
9 Cubism, De Stijl and New Conceptions of Space 149
10 Le Corbusier's Quest for Ideal Form 163
11 Walter Gropius, German Expressionism and the Bauhaus 183
12 Architecture and Revolution in Russia 201
13 Skyscraper and Suburb: The U.S.A. Between the Wars 217
14 The Ideal Community: Alternatives to the Industrial City 241
15 The International Style, the Individual Talent and the Myth of Functionalism 257
16 The Image and Idea of Le Corbusier's Villa Savoye at Poissy 275
17 The Continuity of Older Traditions 289
18 Nature and the Machine: Mies Van Der Rohe, Wright and Le Corbusier in the 1930S 305
19 The Spread of Modern Architecture to Britain and Scandinavia 329
20 Totalitarian Critiques of the Modern Movement 351
21 International, National, Regional: The Diversity of a New Tradition 371
22 Modern Architecture in the U.S.A.: Immigration and Consolidation 395
23 Form and Meaning in the Late Works of Le Corbusier 417
24 The Unite D'habitation at Marseilles as a Collective Housing Prototype 437
25 Alvar Aalto and Scandinavian Developments 453
26 Disjunctions and Continuities in the Europe of the 1950S 471
27 The Process of Absorption: Latin America, Australia, Japan 491
28 On Monuments and Monumentality: Louis I. Kahn 513
29 Architecture and Anti-Architecture in Britain 529
30 Extension and Critique in the 1960S 547
31 Modernity, Tradition and Identity in the Developing World 567
32 Pluralism in the 1970S 589
33 Modern Architecture and Memory: New Perceptions of the Past 617
34 The Universal and the Local: Landscape, Climate and Culture 635
35 Technology, Abstraction and Ideas of Nature 657
Conclusion: Modernity, Tradition, Authenticity 685
Bibliographical Note 690
Notes 693
Index 720
Acknowledgements 735
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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 19, 2004


    this is a book that is enjoyed by those who read and view things in an aritstic way.. also for others:P

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