14 architecture books to buy on Amazon Prime Day

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The Seaside House: Living on the Water 

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Everyone dreams of a house by the sea, and this book presents the best examples of homes for escaping to the serenity of the seaside. Beautifully photographed interiors, exteriors, gardens, and patios offer a peek into these appealing homes, including Martha Stewart’s Seal Harbor, Maine, residence, Donna Karan’s Zen-like East Hampton retreat, Tommy Hilfiger’s Pop art–inspired Miami house, and Giorgio Armani’s Antigua getaway. Such top designers as Martyn Lawrence Bullard, Steven Gambrel, and Ken Fulk have decorated these lovely and inspiring homes—in quintessential seaside communities, including Block Island, Harbor Island, Malibu, and Martha’s Vineyard. buy

Surf Shacks: An Eclectic Compilation of Surfers' Homes from Coast to Coast (Hardcover)

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Surfing is a way of life. A life dominated by the waves and the tide with a cozy place to pause in between. Creative personalities crafting bold homes, Surf Shacks illustrates how surfers live both on and off shore. Many abodes can fall under the label of surf shack: New York City apartments, cabins nestled next to Royal National Park, or tiny Hawaiian huts. Surfing communities are overflowing with creativity, innovation, and rich personalities. Surf Shacks takes a deeper look at surfers' homes and artistic habits. Glimpses of record collections, strolls through backyard gardens, or a peek into a painter’s studio provide insight into surfers’ lives both on and off shore. Through anecdotes and photographs, illustrations and conversations, Surf Shacks reveals a more personal side to surfing and its eclectic cast of characters. Buy

Cabin Porn: Inspiration for Your Quiet Place Somewhere (Hardcover)

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Created by a group of friends who preserve 55 acres of hidden forest in Upstate New York-Cabin Porn began as a scrapbook to collect inspiration for their building projects. As the collection grew, the site attracted a following, which is now a huge and obsessive audience.

The site features photos of the most remarkable handmade homes in the backcountry of America and all over the world. It has had over 10 million unique visitors, with 350,000 followers on Tumblr. Now Zach Klein, the creator of the site (and a co-founder of Vimeo) goes further into the most alluring images from the site and new getaways, including more interior photography and how-to advice for setting up a quiet place somewhere. Buy 

The LEGO Architect 1st Edition

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Travel through the history of architecture in The LEGO Architect. You'll learn about styles like Art Deco, Modernism, and High-Tech, and find inspiration in galleries of LEGO models. Buy 

Many Norths: Spacial Practice in a Polar Territory (Hardcover)

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Many Norths: Spatial Practice in a Polar Territory charts the unique spatial realities of Canada’s Arctic region, an immense territory populated with small, dispersed communities. The region has undergone dramatic transformations in the name of sovereignty, aboriginal affairs management, resources, and trade, among others. For most of the Arctic’s modern history, architecture, infrastructure, and settlements have been the tools of colonialism. Today, tradition and modernity are intertwined. Northerners have demonstrated remarkable adaptation and resilience as powerful climatic, social, and economic pressures collide. This unprecedented book documents—through the themes of urbanism, architecture, mobility, monitoring, and resources—the multiplicity of norths. buy 

Soviet Bus Stops: Volume II (Hardcover)

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A foreword by renowned architecture and culture critic Owen Hatherley reveals new information on the origins of the Soviet bus stop. Examining the government policy that allowed these small architectural forms to flourish, he explains how they reflected Soviet values, and how ultimately they remained―despite their incredible individuality―far-flung outposts of Soviet ideology.

The diversity of architectural approaches is staggering: juxtaposed alongside a slew of audacious modern and brutal designs, there are bus stops shaped as trains, birds, light bulbs, rockets, castles, even a bus stop incorporating a statue of St. George slaying the dragon. An essential companion to the first volume, this book provides a valuable document of these important and unique constructions. Buy

Inside Utopia: Visionary Interiors and Futuristic Homes (Hardcover)

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Radical. Visionary. Poetic. Inside Utopia shows the future of living that architects and designers have envisioned. Spectacular and reflective, unpretentious and efficient: the breathtaking Elrod House by John Lautner; the Lagerfeld Apartment near Cannes that seems like a set from a science fiction film; Palais Bulles in France with its organic and unique architecture. These interiors welcome habitation and spark curiosity while embodying the foundations of minimalism and bygone visions of the future. Inside Utopia delves into the rhyme and reason behind past designs that we still interact with today. The architects, the owners, and the craftsmen like Gio Ponti or Bruce Goff who work behind the scenes created amorphous interiors that invite the mind to wander. At the time they were futuristic, confident, utopian, idealistic― we may not realize it, but they have shaped our current living concepts, and even now, they inspire us anew. Previously it has been difficult to attain access to these preserved interiors, but Inside Utopia unearths what was before unseen. Buy

Retreat: The Modern House in Nature (Hardcover)

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The most forward-looking spaces designed for rustic living in the twenty-first century. Across the globe, architects are creating innovative houses for country living, reimagining the way we escape into the natural world. Some combine industrial materials like metal and concrete with traditional wood. Others create sophisticated essays in off-grid living, employing the most technologically ambitious green-living strategies. Still others place discreet structures on remote, almost-unbuildable locations.

This unique volume profiles new and recent projects that illustrate the inexhaustible potential of the modern house to enter into a dialogue with nature in sustainable yet stylish ways. The collection spans the globe, from the Pacific Northwest to the forests of Japan. Today’s architectural vanguard is represented, as well as established architects working at the forefront of twenty-first-century design, including Bohlin Cywinski Jackson, Rick Joy, Olson Kundig, and Marcio Kogan. These rustic retreats—with comfortable and appealing modern interiors—will resonate with readers of shelter magazines, while the cutting-edge reputations of their architects will interest professionals and students. Buy

Rock the Shack: The Architecture of Cabins, Cocoons and Hide-Outs (Hardcover) 

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From weekend homes to get-away cabins in the mountains, by the sea, or in the woods, this architecture embodies our longing for lounging in nature. For the first time in the history of humankind, more people live in cities than in the country. Yet, at the same time, more and more city dwellers are yearning for rural farms, mountain cabins, or seaside homes. These kinds of refuges offer modern men and women a promise of what urban centers usually cannot provide: quiet, relaxation, being out of reach, getting back to basics, feeling human again. Rock the Shack is a survey of such contemporary refuges from around the world―from basic to luxury. The book features a compelling range of sparingly to intricately furnished cabins, cottages, second homes, tree houses, transformations, shelters, and cocoons. The look of the included structures from the outside is just as important as the view from inside. What these diverse projects have in common is an exceptional spirit that melds the uniqueness of a geographic location with the individual character of the building’s owner and architect. Buy

Tom Kundig: Works (Hardcover)

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In Tom Kundig: Works, the celebrated Seattle-based architect presents nineteen new projects, from Hawaii to New York City. Kundig's award-winning houses, known for their rugged yet elegant and welcoming style, are showcased in lush photography with drawings and sketches, and appear alongside his commercial work—from multistory complexes to the Tacoma Art Museum to a line of hardware (handles, door pulls, hinges, and more). In firsthand accounts, Kundig describes the projects and his design process with many personal anecdotes, making Tom Kundig: Works as much memoir as monograph. The book also includes an introduction by design editor Pilar Viladas and in-depth conversations with Kundig's frequent collaborators—"gizmologist" Phil Turner and contractor Jim Dow (Schuchart/ Dow)—and clients (Bigwood Residence and Studhorse). Buy

Ornament is Crime: Modernist Architecture (Hardcover)

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Ornament Is Crime is a celebration and a thought-provoking reappraisal of modernist architecture. The book proposes that modernism need no longer be confined by traditional definitions, and can be seen in both the iconic works of the modernist canon by Le Corbusier, Mies van der Rohe, and Walter Gropius, as well as in the work of some of the best contemporary architects of the twenty-first century. This book is a visual manifesto and a celebration of the most important architectural movement in modern history. Buy

The New Old House: Historic & Modern Architecture Combined (Hardcover)

 

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he New Old House presents 18 private historic homes, from North America to Europe, and traces the ingenious ways architects have revitalized and refreshed them for a new generation.

Most of the renovations occurred in the last decade, but all of the homes have origins reaching back into the past, in some cases hundreds of years. Projects and firms featured include Greenwich House, Allan Greenberg; Longbranch, Jim Olson; Astley Castle, Witherford Watson Mann; Hunsett Mill, Acme; Cotswolds House, Richard Found; plus more than a dozen others. These projects address such timely factors as sustainability, multiculturalism, preservation, and style, and demonstrate the unique beauty and elegance that comes from the interweaving of modernity and history. Buy

William Krisel's Palm Springs: The Language of Modernism (Hardcover)

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This first major monograph chronicling the work and architectural philosophy of William Krisel features examples and insights from Krisel's own papers, culled from his personal collection as well as the extensive archives of the Getty Research Institute. Krisel's architectural drawings and renderings, as well as many archival photographs, highlight examples of his custom homes, mass-produced housing, and recreational facilities in Palm Springs and rest of the Coachella Valley. Buy

Detroit: The Dream Is Now: The Design, Art, and Resurgence of an American City (Hardcover)

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Detroit: The Dream Is Now is a visual essay on the rebuilding and resurgence of the city of Detroit by photographer Michel Arnaud, co-author of Design Brooklyn. In recent years, much of the focus on Detroit has been on the negative stories and images of shuttered, empty buildings—the emblems of Detroit’s financial and physical decline. In contrast, Arnaud aims his lens at the emergent creative enterprises and new developments taking hold in the still-vibrant city. The book explores Detroit’s rich industrial and artistic past while giving voice to the dynamic communities that will make up its future. The first section provides a visual tour of the city’s architecture and neighborhoods, while the remaining chapters focus on the developing design, art, and food scenes through interviews and portraits of the city’s entrepreneurs, artists, and makers. Detroit is the story of an American city in flux, documented in Arnaud’s thought-provoking photographs. Buy