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Tomorrow's Houses: New England Modernism Hardcover – April 5, 2011

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Editorial Reviews


"What I love most about this book, ...the rich photographs come alive,  it feels as if you could step right into the homes." Joseph Truini This Old House

"I'm eagerly awaiting this beautifully shot tribute to early modernist architecture, especially the Bauhaus-influenced house Gropius designed for his family." Reed Krakoff,

"don't know much about 20th c. architecture in New England... you might  like looking at cool 20th houses in colour"- WowHaus

"I usually like Modern(but), its interiors often leave me cold.Mr. Gorlin's book changed that. It is a feast of beauty&warmth..leaving me to imagine how wonderful it must be to live in any of them."

"Why did modern architecture take root in this region of colonial homes&entrenched tradition?" asks Gorlin. He traces its roots to the Puritan cult of honesty&simplicity...- FORM

“This book’s lush, panoramic photography is the next-best thing to a road trip to visit all of the region’s modernist homes.” ~Details

“Take a look at Tomorrow’s Houses: New England Modernism. Architect and critic Alexander Gorlin shows us twenty-seven houses from Maine to Connecticut designed by such mid-twentieth century luminaries as Frank Lloyd Wright, Philip Johnson, Mies Van der Rohe and Walter Gropius… Geoffrey Gross’s photographs show the houses at their very best, both inside and out.” ~New England Home

“And now, thanks to a brand-new book, Tomorrow’s Houses: New England Modernism, this important piece of American architectural history is available to all, and preserved for the ages… What I love most about the book, however, is its horizontal format. When flopped open to a two-page spread—which measures an amazing 22 inches wide!—the rich photographs come alive, and it feels as if you could step right into the homes.” ~This Old House

“…rounds up the greats (Walter Gropius, Philip Johnson, Marcel Breuer) while paying tribute to George Howe’s Fortune Rock and Serge Chermayeff’s house and studio.” ~Elle Decor

“Architect Alexander Gorlin has assembled an unusual and thoroughly delightful survey of the modernist houses dotting states from Connecticut to Maine.” ~Interior Design

From the Author

Photographer's Statement-I was privileged to spend a day photographing at a house in Massachusetts while the family was present. A beautiful crisp autumn picture post card day; the mom-spent time in the kitchen and spent time with the daughter as well as both children. Dad did yard chores, went on errands and so forth. In the afternoon the son engaged in some hunting, bagging a few rabbits that were skinned and saved, whatever that entails. Toward the end of the day I was invited to stay for dinner- an invitation I eagerly accepted, the cooking aromas of the day ever-present.Towards evening the mom prepared dinner while I played checkers in front of the fireplace with the children. I lost every game.We sat down to a meal of venison stew that couldn't be beat; watched the sun set thru the extensive glass windows/walls and as that progressed I became aware that the house interior now came "alive"- what had been a thin invisible skin was now a safe, nurturing protective but transparent barrier against the night.The house, by design, was a true "machine-for-living". A nurturing structure, it provided shelter and warmth when needed, let the sunlight shine in when present, and provided a constant cocoon-like safe, protective environment. 

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Rizzoli (April 5, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0847833992
  • ISBN-13: 978-0847833993
  • Product Dimensions: 11.4 x 1.3 x 9.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.9 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #840,750 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By E. Jarolin on February 26, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This wonderful book opens with an insightful discussion of the rise and fall of modernist residential architecture in, that most unlikely of settings, traditionalist New England.
Beyond a mere presentation of historical information, the author convincingly argues that the laying of a literary foundation, as it were, enabled the new movement to take root
and for a time flourish here.

The bulk of the book consists of the presentation of 27 houses, from a pioneering Prairie School effort through mid-century works. Each 6 to 12 page section opens with a spectacular,
two page color photo. More large sized, with a smattering of smaller sized, equally well done color photos follow. The accompanying informative text and photo captions elevate this above
the typical coffee table architecture book. Floor plans are provided for 24 of the houses and, though unlabeled, are invaluable in understanding the disposition of spaces. Unfortunately,
for multilevel homes only the main floor is illustrated. More often than not the text picks up the slack by giving us descriptive information where the graphic input falls short.

All in all, a very satisfying presentation of modernist New England houses by top notch architects, famous and obscure.
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1 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Robin Benson on May 6, 2014
Format: Hardcover
It should have been an interesting overview of twenty-seven New England homes but I was very disappointed with the book essentially because of the dull, lifeless photography. Page after page of these wonderful buildings were spoiled for me by the excessive amount of shadows everywhere. Clearly photographing houses mostly surrounded by trees is a challenge but I've seen the same houses in other books with lively, bright photos that capture the essence of Modernism: the creative manipulation of interior space.

On page fifty-four there is an interior of the 1938 Gropius House in Lincoln, Massachusetts, almost the same shot is on page thirty-four of 'Modernism reborn' by Michael Webb but without the strong shadows. Also in Webb's book, on page 118 is a photo of a room in Philip Johnson's 1956 Boissanas House, New Canaan, Connecticut, nearly the same shot is in TH but it has strong diagonal shadows that do nothing for the appreciation of the room's design. In 'Classic modern' by Deborah Dietsch on pages seventy-four and five there is a big photo of a living room in Joseph Sert's 1958 house in Cambridge, Massachusetts, it's bright with very controlled color and minimum of shadows, the same room is featured on pages 214-5 in TH with very subdued color and dark areas.

The book is full of dull color, lifeless house photography and only slightly redeemed by the author's interesting text which has plenty of architectural and background detail for each house.

Published in 2011 and it seems to have been made a close-out title quite quickly, no wonder my still shrink-wrapped copy cost so little.
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