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Skyscrapers Paperback – May 1, 2001

4.8 out of 5 stars 85 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

At first glance, Judith Dupré's Skyscrapers might appear to be just another coffee-table prop. Yes, the fact that it measures a good foot and a half might keep it off the average shelf, but its unusual size is not just a gimmick. This book does full-scale justice to the beautiful black-and-white photographs of some of the world's most famous skyscrapers.

Organized chronologically, this is not a comprehensive guide but a selective survey: 50 of the most "significant" skyscrapers of the last century. From the Washington Monument in Washington, D.C., to the Kuningan Persada Tower in Jakarta, Indonesia, Skyscrapers is a fact lover's dream. Vital statistics on each building include location, height, materials, primary architect, date of completion, and place in architectural history. The careful interaction of text and image brings the unique story of each building--and builder--to life.

But in both Skyscrapers and her follow-up book, Bridges, Dupré moves past the structures themselves to examine the ideals and dreams of the society that created them. Why build up? Who initiated the race to be first? The economic, cultural, and political role of buildings in everyday life is easy to overlook. Skyscrapers is a book that sticks out way past the knees and says, "Hey, look again." --Sara Nickerson --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

"Unique in scale and design, and packed with eye-popping photographs?"




"?[A] handsome compendium, which is as witty in its lanky format as it is fascinating within."


Manuel Mendoza, Dallas Morning News

"Judith Dupré skillfully couples a narrative with stunning photographs and factoids that distinguish this skyscraper-shaped book from so many others."



Bill Thompson, The Post and Courier (Charleston, SC)

"Skyscrapers is ingeniously shaped?this tall and skinny volume?is the perfect canvas for full-page black-and-white photographs and illustrations of well-known classics?.But this isn?t just a celebratory picture book. Ms Dupré is a scholar interested in the aesthetic and environmental issues raised by supertall architecture. Skyscrapers is chock-full of historical context as it projects the implications and future prospects of metal and glass that reach for the sky."
Richard Helm, The Edmonton Journal

"Talk about an ideal match of subject and form?.the stunning array of black-and-white photographs that accompany Dupre?s incisive, fact-filled text capture both the mass and soaring aspirations of the structures?"
Sam Roberts, The New York Times
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 128 pages
  • Publisher: Black Dog & Leventhal; 1 edition (May 1, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1579121535
  • ISBN-13: 978-1579121532
  • Product Dimensions: 6.2 x 0.4 x 15.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (85 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,383,641 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
I have the 1996 hardcover edition of this book and do not know what revisions have been made to this latest addition, however I imagine the text and content will be very similar.
I have found this book to be an excellent source of information on skyscapers in general and the buildings featured in particular.
It has a very easy to read format, witch follows the developement of the skyscraper, with two pages at a time dedicated to one building. This makes it ideal for flicking through and just reading here and there at what ever catches your eye. There are also small gerneral interest and overviews pages troughout the book that help to explain the developement of these buildings.
Not a lot of technical details also make this an easy read and ideal for younger readers.
This is one of the best books I have seen on the subject and I have no reservations recomending this book to anyone even remotely interested in these large buildings.
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Format: Hardcover
By Jeffrey K. Herzer --
The jacket notes accurately describe the author's work as exploring "the interaction of text and image on the printed page". This book is wonderfully presented, a collage of big pictures and little treasures -- like under construction photos, sketches and diagrams, or other "trivia bits". You will find some new and precious treat every time you crack the cover.
"Skyscrapers" is primarily a history of fifty important and world-famous skyscrapers, beginning with the Washington Monument and the Eiffel Tower & finishing with the Petronas Towers (Malaysia), the Jin Mao Building (Shanghai), and the planned Kuningan Persada Tower (Jakarta, Indonesia). A book about tall buildings should have tall pages...and this book is 18 inches tall and 7-1/2 inches wide. The format is entirely black & white, but most enjoyable. Ms. Dupre's text is short and direct and a perfect complement; it illuminates without getting bogged down in technicalities. Whether you're a skyscraper fanatic, an architect or engineer, or just plain fascinated with tall buildings, it matters not...this is a book everyone can enjoy.
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Format: Hardcover
When I first saw this book, I knew that it had to be on my Christmas "wish list." Upon receiving it, my excitement knew no bounds for this is an exquisitely produced homage to the skyscrapers of the past, present, and future. All the famous are here, from the cover featuring the oft-photographed Chrysler Building in New York to The Twin Towers of the World Trade Center to The IBM Tower of San Francisco. Included are many less known mammoth structures from foreign lands, such as Malaysia's Petronas Towers, touted presently as the tallest of all, and the uniquely designed Bank of China in Hong Kong.
When one says, "The sky is the limit," the pages of this book showcase the adage perfectly.
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Format: Hardcover
This is a gorgeous book that is beautifully presented and written. I love that the publisher did this in a tall book format - so appropriate for the subject.

The book is laid out chronologically: the earliest skyscrapers (arguably starting with Home Insurance in Chicago) and continuing on not only to those just finished in the last two years but also projected skyscrapers for which groundbreaking has begun. Each skyscraper is given a great bit of history write up and includes a full page image with facts about the building overlaid on top. The photographs chosen for each building are exquisite - beautifully done both photographically and architecturally. As a photographer myself, I was marveling at the images and sighing with pleasure. But as the daughter of an architect, I also greatly appreciated the layout and presentation of each building's history. Images of artists as well as pictures or paintings help complete the picture of the skyscraper - it's so much more than just an image and a bunch of text.

Interspersed between the 100+ skyscrapers are interviews with architects, discussions of cities known for their skyscrapers (e.g., Dubai), and more There is also a list of the 100 tallest buildings at the back of the book. Since the book is formatted by each skyscraper, it makes it easy to follow and digest - in short bursts or one great read.

This really is an incredibly well done and presented, informative and fascinating, history of Skyscrapers. Absolutely highly recommend this book.

Received as an ARC from the publisher
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Not only are the pictures fabulous, but the writing is excellent. Dupre makes observations that one would not necessarily make without her expert knowledge and intuitive understanding of buildings, communities, people, cultures...
it is fun to just browse the book and gasp at the amazing buildings, or choose one and read of its intricacies.
This is a PERFECT GIFT BOOK!
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Format: Hardcover
Its black and white photography is amazing! And it covers all the famous skyskrapers such as the Sears tower and the Petronas towers. It has amazing facts with great details about the building and its history. It tells from what its made of to the architects who made them. It even tells several interesting facts. It is fun to read or even just to look at
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