The Bauhaus Ideal Then and Now: An Illustrated Guide to Modern Design
William Smock (Author)
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DescriptionThis is an enormously readable history of modernist design, enhanced by the author's black and white drawings that both illustrate and elucidate the text. It is a book meant for lay readers and examines its subject with the kind of wit and insight found in John Berger's ""Ways of Seeing"" and Edward E. Tufte's ""Envisioning Information"". ""The Bauhaus Ideal"" is both a picture book and a guidebook to the fascinating and enduring legacy of modernist design, and to the continuing influence of Bauhaus on interior design - not just on architecture, but also on furniture, glassware, tableware, and kitchen utensils: the whole range of domestic arts. Le Corbusier, Mies van der Rohe, Buckminster Fuller, Charles and Ray Eames, and others were part of a movement to make sense of design in the modern world. Their experiments - both successes and failures - eloquently demonstrate what design can accomplish. 'Design' itself was an invention of the Bauhaus era to combine usefulness, beauty, and economy into a reasonable whole. This unique volume introduces modern design principles and examines them from an historically critical perspective. It concludes with some ideas for melding modern solemnity with postmodern irony. And in each phase the illustrations speak as eloquently as the text. This invaluable book is itself a work of art and is being issued in paperback at a time when there is revival of interest in modernism - furniture by Le Corbusier, Noguchi, and Eames have never been more popular. It serves as a beautifully illustrated design manifesto.
Academy Chicago Publishers
30 June 2009
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