Category Archives: Books

Fortified

Studying domestic architecture has lead me some strange places. Adolf Loos’s essays reminded me that I didn’t know squat about Austria, and the process of figuring that out I keep ending up back in England. The architectural zone that Loos was writing about is marked by the historicism promoted by Jacob von Falke. The location— Ringstraße, the […]

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Interiors in the Rotunda

The engineer for the Vienna Rotunda was J. Scott Russell, who utilized 4,000 tons of iron. Including its topmost crown which was 60 feet tall, its height reached to 284 feet. The diameter of the dome itself was 440 feet, with a circumference of 1,080 feet and peak of 284 feet. Its structure consisted of […]

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Interiors: A Prelude

The carpenters have displayed their products to the right and to the left of the silver courtyard. Stalls were constructed and model rooms were built for them. This is how it has been done for years at every exhibition. Thus the carpenters say to their clients: This is how you should live! The poor client! […]

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The New Style and the Bronze Industry

But does the crafts industry itself not know what it’s best products are? Oh no. It knows as little about its own production as the poet, the painter, in fact any artist at all can know about his own art. Such an artist will always value most highly those products of his muse which have […]

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Exposition

This book contains the essays I wrote up to and during the year 1900. They were written at a time when I had a thousand things to think about. For didactic reasons I had to express my true opinions in sentences that years later still cause me to shudder when I read them. Only at […]

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Swedish Design

Other than Ikea, I really wasn’t familiar with the unique qualities of Swedish design when I steered a course that way researching domestic design. The biggest discovery of the last few years, (read: “news to me”) is that other countries not only sponsored design, but actively promoted it to improve their countries and national identities. […]

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Happy Day on Happy Mountain

I had to steal this image from Urban Rancher’s blog. It’s a drawing of a cabin that became a reality, one of thousands of “tiny houses” that have been all the rage for the last decade or two. I note that this man’s plans include having a separate tool shed nearby (already built in 2010). […]

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Motion Tabled.

It’s easy to get pissed at Adolf Loos, especially when he passionately argues that tattooed people are either savages or criminals. The difficulty in researching him, for me, is trying to figure out some context for his polemic declarations. In the introduction to the 1982 collection  Spoken into the Void: Collected Essays 1897-1900, Aldo Rossi suggests […]

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Swedish Modern

I was looking for furniture designed by Carl Malmsten, or any sort of book about him, when I stumbled on Swedish Arts and Crafts: Swedish Modern —A Movement Towards Sanity In Design, a public relations effort published by the Royal Swedish Commision on the occasion of the New York World’s Fair, 1939. The Swedish manor culture, which […]

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The ornamented snake

I dreamed this past night that a strange young man urged me to enter a house where he would show me that he could charm snakes. He went ahead. Naturally, I followed him. In there, I actually saw him standing in the center of the room, and in front of him, raised almost as tall […]

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