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The Feeling of Things [Hardcover]

Adam Caruso
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
Price: £16.99 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Book Description

1 July 2009
This is a superb collection of essays focusing on contemporary architecture, from one of its leading British figures. Throughout his career, Adam Caruso - a leading figure in contemporary British architecture, and one half of celebrated London-based architectural firm Caruso St John - has continued to develop his writing and research, focusing his thoughts on the architectural practice and prominent figures of the Modern Movement. "The Feeling of Things" brings together a number of Caruso's writings (1997-2008) through which he reveals a new way to see and experience the radical approach to contemporary architecture of the Modern Movement.

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 98 pages
  • Publisher: Ediciones Poligrafa (1 July 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 8434311860
  • ISBN-13: 978-8434311862
  • Product Dimensions: 22.1 x 15.5 x 1.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 45,628 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

About the Author

Adam Caruso was Professor of Architecture at the University of Bath, 2002-2004. He is currently Visiting Professor on the Cities Programme at the London School of Economics.

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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
4.2 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars For lovers of the non-spectacular 25 Mar 2010
Adam Caruso's collection of thoughts on architecture succinctly capture the zeitgeist of the rejection of showy, ego-driven architect in favour of quieter, less spectacular, but more powerful and emotive, construction-driven architecture. The last decade in has witnessed, to quote Caruso, architects, "like toddlers chaotically exploring their new upright world.... Testing the boundaries of [their] expanded territory in an experimental and haphazard way.... In the absence of legitimate cultural imperatives, many architects continue to pursue novelty as their prime objective, transplanting forms from product design, statistical analysis and other disciplines."

As you can tell from those sentences, this book explains Caruso St. John's focus on a more tectonically and emotively focused architecture, one that is less shouty but strives for greater longevity and monumentality. Whilst such ideas are becoming increasingly well received due to the success of architects like Sergison Bates, Peter Zumthor, CSJ, Olgiati and Bearth & Deplazes, Adam Caruso presents his points with eloquence and astute historical metaphor.

In many ways, the essays reminded me of Sergison Bates's Papers 2. Adam Caruso's knowledge of architecture clearly is vast, and I expect far greater than the majority of the people reading this book. Consequently, my one criticism of this book would be that, whilst some of the buildings and spaces that Caruso refers to in the second half of the book are eloquently described, the book may have benefited from a few more, and larger, images for those unfamiliar. With Papers 2, whilst not overflowing with images, I felt Sergison Bates were more successful in keeping the unsophisticated reader (which I very much categorise myself as) with them.

I will probably go through it again whilst googling some of the buildings I don't know as a visual aid.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant... 21 Feb 2011
Brilliant, thoughtful and evocative. This deceptively thin book is packed with many profound thoughts about the conditions of contemporary architectural practice. Not a project book, the text in here admits a theoretic bias, an opportunity for a leading practicioner to step outside of practice and analyse through various essays themes of importance and interest. Some of these subjects are an outright challenge to modern othodoxy, whilst others seem ultra conservative. Either way the writing is engaging and concise. An excellent read!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Simple, understated, beautiful 10 Jan 2011
I have to agree with the reviewer above that this book would be improved by one or two more photographs in certain sections. However please don't let that put you off. After nearly six years of studying architecture, this is one of the best books I've read. It's not simply for architects either, as anyone interested in design would have no problem understanding it.

Essentially, the simplicity of the book's style is a reflection upon Caruso's thoughts on architecture - that it should serve its purpose well, be accessible to all, be free of gimmicks and architectural snobbery and shouldn't try to stand out from its neighbours by being flashy. It reads easily and is nothing like as dry as the cover might suggest.

Neither in favour of inhuman, oversized skyscrapers nor fake historic pastiche, our cities would be better slightly places if more architects and designers read this book.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars 28 July 2014
This is probably an excellent book - if you are an architect!
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