Château La Coste: Art and Architecture in Provence

Château La Coste: Art and Architecture in Provence


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Château La Coste, near Aix-en-Provence, is a unique property that combines sculptural artworks by leading contemporary artists alongside works by some of the world’s best-known architects, all within the grounds of a working organic vineyard. Since 2004 the estate, which occupies an ancient site, has been transformed into an exceptional plein-air museum, and the number of installations grows every year.

The spreading collection lies within the walk of a spectacular Art Centre, designed by the world-renowned Japanese architect Tadao Ando. On the reflecting pool in front of the building is one of Louise Bourgeois’ giant arachnoid sculptures, Crouching Spider. To the north lies a futuristic winery by Jean Nouvel. By taking one of several routes to the south or west, the visitor encounters such monumental installations as Sean Scully’s sculpture of stacked blocks of limestone, Wall of Light Cubed; Richard Serra’s steel sheets, AIX; and Oak Room by Andy Goldsworthy, a cave of interwoven oak branches, integrated into an old stone wall. Installations by Liam Gillick, Kengo Kuma, Paul Matisse, Sophie Calle and many others punctuate the pathways. And by an ancient Roman route, Ai Weiwei has created another new path up the hillside, using paving stones salvaged from the renovated port at Marseilles. Overlooking the site is a 16th-century chapel restored by Ando and enclosed by a framework of steel and glass. The music and exhibition pavilions, close to the ‘village’ of buildings at the heart of the property, have been designed by Frank Gehry and Renzo Piano respectively.

In this stunning new book, Robert Ivy of the American Institute of Architects and the curator Alistair Hicks explore each work of architecture and art installation in depth. Their insightful commentaries are accompanied by specially commissioned photographs by the acclaimed architectural photographer Alan Karchmer. The book is arranged into sections covering all areas of the property, so that the reader is able to experience and discover Château La Coste as a visitor would. In the introduction, Ivy relates the conception, creation and further development of Château La Coste by its owner, Patrick McKillen; while, to conclude the book, Hicks considers the site’s ever-increasing exhibition programme. Throughout the pages, the reader will feel transported to idyllic Provence, to this most remarkable and significant collection of modern and contemporary art and architecture.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781858946818
Publisher: Merrell Publishers, LTD
Publication date: 09/01/2020
Pages: 256
Sales rank: 781,828
Product dimensions: 10.50(w) x 11.70(h) x 1.10(d)

About the Author

Robert Ivy, FAIA, is an author, editor and architect, and currently serves as CEO of the American Institute of Architects. For more than 14 years, he was Editor-in-Chief of one of the world’s most widely disseminated and admired architectural publications, Architectural Record. His own writing encompassed nearly 150 monthly editorials, interviews with leading figures in the architectural culture, and major stories. His book Fay Jones: Architect (2001) was cited for the ‘highest standards of scholarship, design, and production’. He has also served three times as the US Commissioner for the Venice Architecture Biennale.

Alistair Hicks is the author of The Global Art Compass (2014), a survey of 21st-century art. For 18 years, he was the Senior Curator at Deutsche Bank. He left to advise more clients and curate more exhibitions, his latest two being The Time Needs Changing at the Pera Museum, Istanbul (2018–19), and The Crime of Mr Adolf Loos at the Axel Vervoordt Gallery, Antwerp (2019). Among his earlier publications are School of London (1989), New British Art in the Saatchi Collection (1989) and Art Works: British and German Contemporary Art, 1960–2000 (as co-editor; Merrell, 2001). He is currently working on two separate books on Francis Bacon and Istanbul

Alan Karchmer is a photographer of architecture, interior design and the built environment. His life in photography began while he was studying for his master’s degree in architecture. This foundation in critical analysis informs his artistic vision, with particular emphasis on context, materiality, quality of light and human interaction. In a career spanning 40 years, he has received commissions from the foremost architects of our time, who rely on his insightful images to define their work. His photographs have been published in the architectural press and exhibited in museums and private collections worldwide. He often collaborates with his wife, the photo stylist Sandra Benedum, whose keen perceptions bring greater depth to the visual narratives they create. The Karchmer Photographic Archive is a Promised Gift to the National Building Museum in Washington, DC.

Tadao Ando was born in Osaka, Japan. Self-educated in architecture, he established Tadao Ando Architect & Associates in 1969. Among the many awards and honours he has received are the Design Prize of the Architectural Institute of Japan (1979), the Pritzker Architecture Prize (1995), the American Institute of Architects Gold Medal (2002), the Gold Medal of the Union Internationale des Architectes (2005), the Japanese Order of Culture (2010) and Commandeur de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres (2013). His work includes a large number of private and public buildings, such as Row House in Sumiyoshi, Osaka (1976), Church of the Light, Osaka (1989), Rokko Housing, Kobe (1983, 1993, 1999), the Pulitzer Arts Foundation, St Louis (2001), the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth (2002), 21_21 DESIGN SIGHT, Tokyo (2007), the Punta della Dogana, Venice (2009), Château La Coste (2011), projects in Naoshima (1992, 1995, 2004, 2010, 2013) and the Bourse de Commerce, Paris (in progress, 2020). He has taught at Yale, Columbia and Harvard universities, and is currently a Professor Emeritus at the University of Tokyo.

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