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Jim Olson Houses Hardcover – November 17, 2009

4.2 out of 5 stars 8 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

When architect Jim Olson designs a home, his distinctive aesthetic, elegant and understated, comes into play. Sensitive to his clients, many of whom are sophisticated art collectors, he creates living spaces that are comfortable and expressive, enabling the room’s art to speak. Jim has an innate talent for combining art and architecture and for working with artists to incorporate their installations seamlessly into his work. I dream of the intimate room of changing light that artist James Turrell created in a Jim Olson house as it was being designed and built. Jim Olson, gracious and self-effacing, has a magic touch.
—Mimi Gates, Former Director, Seattle Art Museum

About the Author

Jim Olson established his firm in Seattle in 1966. Since that time the office has grown into a diverse practice with an international reputation as Olson Sundberg Kundig Allen, winner of the 2009 AIA Firm Award. Olson is the recipient of the 2007 Seattle AIA Medal of Honor. He has lectured extensively throughout the United States and in Canada and Mexico on the relationship of art and architecture.

Michael Webb writes on architecture, design, and travel. He is the author of twenty-six books, most recently Modernist Paradise: Niemeyer House, Boyd Collection and Venice, CA: Art + Architecture in a Maverick Community. Previous titles include: Art/Invention/House, Adventurous Wine Architecture, Brave New Houses: Adventures in Southern California Living, and Modernism Reborn: Mid-Century Modern American Houses. Webb contributes regularly to the Architectural Review, Architect’s Newspaper, Mark, and The Plan, and he also writes for the New York Times, Town & Country, and World of Interiors. He was born and educated in England.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 256 pages
  • Publisher: The Monacelli Press (November 17, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1580932525
  • ISBN-13: 978-1580932523
  • Product Dimensions: 9.3 x 1 x 9.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #582,374 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
I absolutely loved this book. The elegance and refinement of all the projects makes it an instant classic and places Jim Olson as one of the best architects of our time, on par with such masters as Renzo Piano or Richard Neutra. There is a level of perfection and detail that is rarely seen in architecture today and a sense of peaceful meditation on the settings in which each house is built. The Hong Kong house, which is on the cover, is one of my favorite.
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Format: Hardcover
Anyone who likes residential architecture should have this book. The grace and elegance of each project is astounding, the pictures are beautifully shot and the introduction is carefully worded. The book takes you on a first class world tour of extraordinary houses, from Oregon to Hong Kong, and leaves you with a great sense of harmony. The choice of materials reflects the purity of the design and the windows seem to always open onto sceneries that make you want to meditate on the world. I like the fact that there isn't too much text, that images are let to speak for themselves. All in all, this is one of the best gifts that was given to me.
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Format: Hardcover
I received this book as a Christmas gift and was extremely excited to dig in, however there isn't much to this book. Maybe I had high expectations because Tom Kundig's (the K in OSKA) book is amazing. When compared to Kundig's book there is hardly any process sketches, or details, or text for that matter. Each project begins with an extremely short project description and a small sketch, the floor plans are also small and contain no legend. The pictures in this book while nice, seem repetitive and many are just unnecessary. Lastly the architectural designs themselves apart from the Glass Farmhouse & Bird Watcher's Residence come off as Lavish McMansions.
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Format: Hardcover
The projects in this book are so beautiful. I can flip through it for hours! I aspire one day to own a house like one of these, but until then, this book has given me great ideas.
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