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Customer reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars

This is one of those Taschen architectural books that is a trap for the unwary because of the reviews. It was originally published in 2000 as a jumbo edition (16 by 12.5 inches) and now reprinted with exactly the same content but a smaller edition (check out the Product Description above) to celebrate Taschen's twenty-fifth anniversary. There is also a ninety-six page paperback, a sort of vastly condensed edition of the book. Because the title is the same for each edition Amazon will probably use all the reviews for all editions.

To sum up all of Richard Neutra's built work in a single volume (and in three languages) is an editorial compromise which I think mostly comes off. To accommodate English, French and German means making lots of the excellent photos smaller than they would have been if it was in English only. The copy is set in seven point Gill Light (though with reasonable line spacing) so it takes up less room but it isn't easy to read after the sun has gone down.

The three hundred completed structures are in chronological order from the 1915 Officer's tea house in Bosnia-Herzegovina to the 1969 Uni of Pennsylvania student housing (Neutra died in 1970). All of them are named with a street address, date and depending on their importance either a brief description or several hundred words. I only found one that had no description or photos. Maybe three-quarters of the buildings have plans re-drawn from the originals (one inch to twenty feet or one inch to thirty feet).

Julius Shulman took probably more than half the thousand photos in the book, he was Neutra's favorite snapper and of course his photos make all the work look interesting so the reader can appreciate the clever use of space, some of the houses are actually quite compact. Most buildings get between two and four images with the world famous ones getting more: the Edgar Kaufmann house in Palm Springs gets twelve of the interior and exterior. The photos of California houses clearly show how Neutra (and others) took advantage of the pleasant climate by using floor to ceiling movable windows which opened to allow the interior floor coverings to blend into exterior patios and gardens.

Despite the editorial compromises I've mentioned I think the book is a wonderful survey of Neutra's work. He was, of course, one of the great architects of the twentieth century.
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on 14 March 2001
get into the spirit and the genius that is Richard Neutra, California modernism's greatest architect. This is the first book to bring together the complete works of Neutra (nearly 300 priate homes and buildings) sporting an extra-large format and a wooden cover, not to mention over 1000 photo's including those by architectures greatest photographer, Julius Shulman (see books such as Modernism rediscovered, Julius Shulman Architecture and its photograghy and Julius Shulman The Portfolio). A must have for any modernist!
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on 24 February 2011
Another amazing "Complete Works" by Taschen

Richard Neutra's works are listed in chronological order according to the year in which they were completed.
Chapels, houses, hotels, school buildings, planetaria and the US embassy in Pakistan, each
architectural marvel is described with a floor plan, some B&W photos and a rare color photo (about 1 in 10 photos is color).
My personal favourites are;
USA - the 1947 Edgar Kaufman in Palm Springs
Europe - the 1961 Rang house in Konigstein - Germany.
There's an appendix listing all the houses and maps of Europe and the USA with the locations of the buildings described in the book. An epilogue by photographer Julius Shulman completes this definitive book on one of the masters of Modernism...

Hopefully Taschen is planning a similar work on John Lautner

Philip Corneille
Belgium - Croatia
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on 2 July 2013
I had higher expectations on the photographic material in this book. Images are beautiful but the majority of them are too small and they do not take advantage of the large format of this book. I also expected more interior images. I have the impression that the large format was chosen because they needed to cram in text in 3 different languages. There is a descent amount of information for each project but I found the font size to be too small. I like the fact that they mention the construction cost (back then) of many of the projects but it would have been nice if they'd also mentionned today's construction cost. Book cover has the appearance of real wood but isn't.

In my oppinion this book serves as a good reference book but it is a very poor coffee table or picture book.
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on 22 September 2016
An excellent book outlining the work of a great architect,good description of each project with nice photographs
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on 18 July 2016
An impressingly detailed overview of Neutra's work, thoroughly researched.
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on 14 May 2015
Great book with great pictures and blueprints, amazing price.
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on 23 November 2014
Terrific volume on the under-rated Richard Neutra
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on 9 January 2016
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