- Series: World of Art
- Paperback: 376 pages
- Publisher: Thames & Hudson; 3 Sub edition (May 1992)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0500202575
- ISBN-13: 978-0500202579
- Product Dimensions: 1.2 x 6 x 8.5 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.5 pounds
- Average Customer Review: 20 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #927,589 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Modern Architecture: A Critical History (World of Art) 3 Sub Edition
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Top customer reviews
is probably the best short history of modern architecture, or history
of modern architecture of any length perhaps, and it succeeds quite
well as a "critical" history. Maybe some people think
Frampton overuses the word "critical," but he uses the term
in a meaningful way. He presents information but also systematically
analyses that information and draws reasoned conclusions. And the
rest of his language, supposedly impenetrable to some readers, is used
meaningfully also. It's not jargon. Yes, Frampton is well-educated
and he has an impressive vocabulary. Is that a problem? I would
expect as much from an architectural historian and critic. His style
is different from other writers and perhaps somewhat less accessible,
but he has many valuable things to say. Possibly more so than any
other historian of modern architecture that I've come across. He's
thought deeply about his subject matter and offers us his carefully
reasoned analyses. He does this while providing us with a wealth of
factual information in a concise format. It's an excellent book.
There have been many architectural writers in recent decades who've
abused us with meaningless archibabble but Frampton isn't one of them. I agree with one reviewer that Frampton assumes his readers are already familiar with the buildings (and architects, and 20th c. history in general), and I agree that more images and larger images would help. But there are a lot of images and the book is supposed to be concise. Maybe it's best to read a couple other histories first - Pevsner's "Pioneers of Modern Design" and Hitchcock's longer "Architecture: 19th and 20th Centuries," for example. ...
It is a very readable overview of modern architecture, beginning with the late 18th century and 19th century predecessors which led to a thorough re-examination of architecture in the early 20th century. Frampton divides his study into short thematic chapters which allow readers to focus on one movement at a time. There are various recurring figures such as Frank Lloyd Wright, Le Corbusier and Mies van der Rohe; but Frampton covers an exceedingly broad range of architectural ideas in the past century.
He has updated the book to include some of the more recent currents in architecture such as deconstruction and fragmentation, which he places in the context of the broader stream of architecture since 1962 in one of his more thought-provoking chapters, "Place, Production and Scenography." He notes how many of the recent ideas in architecture draw from the Russian avant-garde and Italian Futurism. He pans Post-Modernism for its pretension display of historicism, as exhibited in the work of Michael Graves, preferring the more rigorous historic views of neo-rationalists like Aldo Rossi. It is an insightful, illuminating book, which has been updated to include Modern Architecture to 1991.