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Architecture Books – Week 22/2023
My Biennale Haul
This week on A Weekly Dose of Architecture Books:
Two weeks ago I was in Venice for the Biennale, covering the 18th International Architecture Exhibition curated by Lesley Lokko for World-Architects. It was my first trip back to Venice since the 2018 Biennale, which was the 16th edition and was curated by Yvonne Farrell and Shelley McNamara of Grafton Architects. Like other writers outside of Europe, the interim edition, though delayed from 2020 to 2021 due the pandemic, still opened at a time when international travel was difficult. I passed on it, as many others did.
My 2018 trip yielded a pair of "book briefs" on my blog with two handfuls of catalogs from the main exhibition, some from the national pavilions, and some on collateral events. Although a similar number of books from the current Biennale is featured on my blog, it felt this year that print catalogs were slimmer than in years past. For instance, the national pavilions were focused more on digital than print publications, making them available via QR codes and offering to ship print versions later. And only one pavilion, Bahrain, had a large stack of books that whittled down over the course of the two-day vernissage.
Architecture Book News:
One of the pavilions/catalogs not mentioned in my blog post is Girjegumpi, the Nordic Pavilion, which includes Joar Nango's mobile Sámi Architectural Library of “200+ book titles addressing issues relevant to indigenous architecture, resistance and decolonization.” [Girjegumpi]
“Crafted in steel, the Serpentine Bookhouse,” designed by Atelier XI and more accurately a bookstore, “is a bibliophile's dream.” [STIRworld]
Gunyah Goondie + Wurley: The Aboriginal Architecture of Australia, which sounds like a really interesting book, just won a Designers' Choice Award at the 2023 Australian Book Design Awards. [Books + Publishing]
Albena Yaneva, author of Made by the Office for Metropolitan Architecture: An Ethnography of Design, discusses some of the “radical rethinking of the limits of architecture” explored in her new book, Architecture After COVID. [The Conversation]
[Last week] I was fortunate enough to get a peek of the G.E. Kidder Smith archive at @iuav_archivio_progetti courtesy of @maganscotico, author of the excellent G.E. Kidder Smith Builds. A highlight, in the video, is the single unpublished copy of GEKS's The Magnificence of Italy:
A few recently received books:
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— John Hill