Architecture in situ refers to its function and context--and that is how each building is examined in this DK book: what was/is its use and importance. "Architecture is handed down to us in a 'used' condition and is subject to a continual process of evolution" (6). I had initially planned to deduct a star for the book's not showing an illustration of the building's original edifice (as opposed to showing the ruins of many of the ancient structures). However, the writer's pointed reference to a building's modifications and rebuilding over the years would indicate cultural preferences and developments of the builders. A building in ruins would indicate the end of the people, also an important indicator. The book then begins with an early architecture in ruins: the Temple of Amun in Karnak, Egypt. Each structure throughout the book is shown on two pages, with a photograph showing as much a total of the complex as possible, then side photos and illustrations devoted to details. One includes specifications. A partial list of architectural greats: the Parthenon, the Colosseum, the Pantheon, Ise Shrine (Japan), Santa Sophia (Byzantine empire), Temple I in Tikal (Mayan kingdom), a temple in India, Pisa Cathedral, Durham Cathedral, Angkor Wat, Krak des Chevaliers (Syria), Notre Dame de Paris, and the Alhambra. Many cathedrals and temples are included, as well as educational buildings (King's College, Cambridge), personal town homes: Villa Rotonda, Italy, Hardwick Hall, England, as well as a mausoleum (Taj Mahal in India), palaces (Potala palace in Tibet), museums (Altes in Berlin), government (the House of Parliament), industrial (Turbine Building near Paris for power for a chocolate factory). Then, of course, there are the modernistic homes built by Frank Lloyd Wright (Robie House in Chicago), the amazing Crystal Palace (industrial finesse), the creative Glasgow School of Art, the soaring Empire State Building, the delightful Sydney Opera House, the functional and poetic Tokyo Olympic Stadium, the frankly industrial aesthetic of the Pompidou Center in Paris, the remarkable Hong Kong and Shanghai Bank, and the hovering Kansai International Airport Terminal, all of which mark architecture as the opening essay states: function and context of cultural preferences and historical development. This is an amazing and important book dedicated to human ingenuity and collaborative effort. Not to be missed. In reading and reviewing this book, I've been on a long and exciting journey through the history of creation in stone and iron and glass. Just amazing.
Impressive while affordable.
Published by Thriftbooks.com User , 14 years ago
This book takes us on an incredible journey through time and space, as we can stare lenghthily , without being on a frantic tour bus schedule, at the architectural wonders of our world . Without getting too technical , this volume , which will be enjoyed by all ages awakens a sense of wonder in us , by taking us in theses wonderful places , all over the planet. A tremendous wealth of visual inspiration.
The World's Greatest Buildings Explored and Explained <br /> The World's Greatest Buildings Explored
Published by Thriftbooks.com User , 16 years ago
Great photos as there always is in the DK series. Takes the viewer from ancient Egypt to 1994 completion of the Osaka Airport designed by Piano. Great introduction to architecture.
50 of the World's Greatest Structures
Published by Thriftbooks.com User , 20 years ago
Probably the only thing better than owning this book, would be to travel to all these locations with someone you absolutely loved and who absolutely had a love for life and architecture. Features: -Every important architectural style from ancient Egyptian to Contemporary -50 sites illustrating changes and developments in architecture in all cultures -Authoritative text to explain developments in technology, materials and styles -Detailed annotations Some of the sites featured: Notre-Dame-du Haut, Ise Shrine, The Chrysler Building, The Parthenon, Taj Mahal, Temple of Amun, Karnak, The Colosseum, Santa Sophia, Pisa Cathedral, Durham Cathedral, Sydney Opera House, Tokyo Olympic Stadium and Notre-Dame, Paris. Favorites: Santa Sophia, Kandariya Mahadev Temple, Pisa Cathedral, Durham Cathedral, Angkor Way, Florence Cathedral, St. Basil's Cathedral, Hardwick Hall, Taj Mahal, Castle Howard, Sagrada Familia and The Ark. Each site has a two-page spread. You can see a large picture covering the middle/center of the two pages and then it is surrounded by facts about the specifications, history, floor plans, sketches, inside views, specific decorations and styles. When viewing the pictures of the Leaning tower of Pisa, you also get to see the inside of the Pisa Cathedral and read about Romanesque vaulting. My favorite site is the Notre-Dame, Paris. This is the most amazing Gothic cathedral ever and was well worth the bus ride to Paris! Unfortunately they don't have room to show you the interior, which is rather amazing in itself. An exploration into human creativity. This book will make you want to travel the world to see these fascinating buildings in person. Just to imagine walking amongst all this inspiration makes one feel overwhelmingly alive. Who would not want to walk along the stone-vaulted corridors in the Castle Drogo? Feeling Inspired. ~The Rebecca Review
Pictures and info about the world's best structures.
Published by Thriftbooks.com User , 24 years ago
Every D-K book I have had the pleasure of reading has been a feast for the eyes as well as the mind. This one is no exception. I enjoyed it because it explores many famous structures as well as some which should be famous but are not. I knew little about architecture before I opened the book and so I learned a great deal and enjoyed every minute of it. I love this book!
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