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Society of Architectural Historians Announces 2018 Publication Award Recipients

Courtesy of Society of Architectural Historians Courtesy of Society of Architectural Historians

Get ready to add to your reading and watch lists because the Society of Architectural Historians (SAH) just announced the 2018 award recipients for the SAH Publication, Film and Video Awards. Winners received their awards at SAH’s 71st Annual International Conference awards ceremony on April 20th in Saint Paul, Minnesota. The list of SAH Award recipients represents some of the best media in architectural, urban, and landscape history, as well as historic preservation scholarship and architectural exhibition catalogs. Nominations for the 2019 awards will be accepted by SAH on June 1st of this year. 

See the list of this year's SAH Award recipients below.

Alice Davis Hitchcock Book Award

For nearly 70 years, the Alice Davis Hitchcock Book Award has acclaimed one of the most scholarly works of architectural history published by a North American scholar. 

A Guide To Smart Home Automation In 2018

As 2018 gets into gear, many are predicting that this year the smart home revolution will enter the stratosphere. Domestic automation has never been more advanced or more affordable, so what are some of the devices and systems that are set to define the next 12 months?

The Hubs To Watch

Fashion Swatch

Back when Apple first introduced Siri with the iPhone 4S in 2011, the idea of talking aloud to a voice-controlled virtual assistant seemed faintly preposterous. Cut to seven years later and people are much more at home with the concept, not least because the rise of smart speakers and hubs has helped to eliminate a lot of these inhibitions.

By far the most prominent product range in this niche at the moment is offered by online shopping stalwart Amazon. The Echo family of smart speakers, including the full sized model, the more compact Echo Dot and the touchscreen-toting Echo Show, have brought Alexa into millions of homes worldwide. And in doing so, expectations about what smart home hubs should offer have skyrocketed.

So You Want to Learn About: Frank Lloyd Wright

The "So You Want to Learn About" series highlights books focused on a particular theme: think "socially responsible architecture" and "phenomenology," rather than broad themes like "housing" or "theory." Therefore the series aims to be a resource for finding decent reading materials on certain topics, born of a desire to further define noticeable areas of interest in the books I review. And while I haven't reviewed every title, I am familiar with each one; these are not blind recommendations.

Today is the 150th anniversary of Frank Lloyd Wright's birth, and with that sesquicentennial are lots of celebrations. These include exhibitions, such as Unpacking the Archive at the Museum of Modern Art, and numerous new and reissued publications. The latter provoked me to put together this small list of books on Wright – small in that it's a tiny fraction of the hundreds of books devoted to the architect, but these are the ones I'm most familiar with. Those interested in learning (more) about the great architect should find something useful in the pages of these books.


Design Open Mic: Connecting the Ecological Dots of Amazon Trade

Virginia Calkin challenged our Wednesday lunchers: how do you promote trade through a materials-rich region and downplay material exploitation? The peoples of the Amazon basin are particularly keen to find an answer. Following the 1960's discovery of oil and the recent proposal of new trade routes, rural Ecuador has become the subject of contentious battles for land and development.

Calkin represents a design studio hoping to stem the influx of unsustainable development by applying incentives to let the land alone, and engage locals in the conversation.

Book Briefs #15: Even More Journals

"Book Briefs" are an ongoing series of posts with two- or three-sentence first-hand descriptions of some of the numerous books that make their way into my library. These briefs are not full-blown reviews, but they are a way to share more books worthy of attention than can find their way into reviews on my daily or weekly pages. See my recent installments on magazines: "a bunch of journals" and "a bunch more journals." 1: eVolo #05: ARCHI73C7UR3 X3NOCUL7UR3 | eVolo Magazine | Winter 2013 | Amazon The fifth issue of eVolo Magazine is the first with a guest editor. Carlo Aiello hands over the reigns to Juan Azulay of MTTR MGMT with Benjamin Rice. Xenoculture is the issue's theme, and its focus is on the other that dwells within; the exuberant, the grotesque, the mutations that the majority fears, or at least are wary of. It's a topic that can easily be limited to the aesthetic, but the editors insert some pretty interesting interviews among the predominantly visual pages. Across five "acts" are contributions from a diverse array of architects, artists, and photographers, from Nick Cave and Francois Roche in Act 01 to David Maisel and Perry Hall (who contributes the cover image) near the end of the XL issue. 2: Harvard Design Magazine 35: Architecture's Core? | Harvard GSD | 2012 Starting with issue 35 of its biannual magazine, Harvard GSD is exploring the disciplines of architecture, landscape architecture, and urbanism (urban planning and urban design), by looking inwards at their "cores" rather than outwards to their relationships with other fields.

Book Brief #11: A Bunch of Journals

"Book Briefs" are an ongoing series of posts with two- or three-sentence first-hand descriptions of some of the numerous books that make their way into my library. These briefs are not full-blown reviews, but they are a way to share more books worthy of attention than can find their way into reviews on my daily or weekly pages.


2013 Holiday Gift Books

This year I'm presenting a selection of 35 holiday gift books from the same number of publishers. The book covers provide more information and links to Amazon, while the book titles are linked to the publishers' websites. Where applicable, links to my reviews are provided.


Landscape Futures: Instruments, Devices and Architectural Inventions
Geoff Manaugh, editor
Paperback, 308 pages

My review on my weekly page.

Peter Zumthor: 1986-2013

The most recent monograph—the only one, actually—on Swiss architect Peter Zumthor was released in 1998. It's so desirable that used copies are being sold on Amazon for around $1,500. A forthcoming monograph from Scheidegger and Spiess may temper the desirability of that book, since it will cover Zumthor's work from 1986-2013 (the earlier one covers 1979-1997) and will be more than twice as big (800 pages versus 318). Sure, it comes with a $250 cover price and won't be released until September, but if anybody can find me a more anticipated architecture book I'd like to know about it.


Book description via Amazon:

Where Gods Live: Forest Environment Enhanced by Live Digital Projections

[ By SA Rogers in Art & Installation & Sound. ]

As if forests aren’t magical enough already, the Japanese art/technology collective Teamlab will be live-projecting their signature transforming visuals onto the surfaces of Mifuneyama Rakuen Park, giving visitors the feeling of being on an alien planet. ‘Forest Where Gods Live’ is a collection of individual installations with names like ‘Ever Blossoming Life Rock,’ Drawing on the Water Surface Created by the Dance of Koi and Boats,’ ‘Memory of Continuous Life’ and ‘Resonating Forest.’