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Makers of Modern Architecture by Martin Filler
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Makers of Modern Architecture

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Makers of Modern Architecture by Martin Filler
Hardcover $45.00
Jul 17, 2007 | ISBN 9781590172278

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  • Jul 17, 2007 | ISBN 9781590172278

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"Most of these 17 short essays by Filler (architecture critic, House & Garden) originally appeared in the New York Review of Books; some have been expanded and updated. They touch on aspects of the work and lives of 20-plus giants of modern architecture (e.g., Mies van der Rohe, Le Corbusier) as well as contemporary practitioners (e.g., Frank Gehry, Richard Meier)…Filler’s engaging observations and insights are worth reading." –-Library Journal

"Since the mid-1980s, Martin Filler has contributed a medley of long critical essays on architects and architecture to The New York Review of Books. A new book by that publisher released on July 17 collects and updates Filler’s essays in a single offering entitled Makers of Modern Architecture: From Frank Lloyd Wright to Frank Gehry. Arriving in time for the dog days, Filler provides something to sink our teeth into. Delicious!…Filler’s essays consist of a rich amalgam of biographical analyses, emphasizing each individual’s career trajectory, with some formal analysis of the architects’ built work. Refreshingly, he avoids too much of the latter, preferring to delve into matters often unexplored in the popular press. Along the way, we encounter quotable quotes, digressions, obsessions, professional sympathies, categorizations, personal prejudices, pronouncements, analogies, refutations, as well as political and social observations, and a rich, fulsome exercise of the English language.In our superficial era, when architectural criticism gasps for column inches in the newspapers, and blogs woefully lack erudition or research, Filler’s assessments in The New York Review stand apart, eschewing fashion and offering polished, carefully edited and backed-up, though highly personal, assertions.says, clearly a fascination, if not minor obsession, of this New York-based writer…In the course of 300 pages, he engages 17 architects, including the Eamseses (positive review) and Calatrava (less sanguine), but manages to omit Robert Stern, Peter Eisenman, and Michael Graves, all 1980s rock stars, as well as a shopping list of current galactic lights such as Zaha Hadid, Rem Koolhaas, Jean Nouvel, and Thom Mayne…Ultimately, Filler’s engaging book entertains and informs as it opines; then the language ceases, leaving us hungering for more of this piquant, yet savory intellectual dish." —Architectural Record

"Martin Filler’s Makers of Modern Architecture…should eclipse other works in the field. He incisively places many 20th century architects and their work in a social context. He is also a refreshingly colorful, on-target observer, as when he limns, hilariously, the agonizing approach to (and his disappointment in) Richard Meier’s Getty Center in Los Angeles, or notes that Louis Sullivan ‘sometimes edged toward the crackpot in the relentless of his passionate obsessions.’" –House & Garden

"Imagine a Vasari’s Lives for architects, ranging from Louis Sullivan to Gehry, Piano, Calatrava. That’s what Martin Filler has written with vivacity, concision, and encyclopedic erudition in Makers of Modern Architecture. If you’re an old architectural hand, you’ll need this book as an essential point of reference; if you’re an avid amateur who wonders about the built world, you’ll find it the best college course you never took. Filler’s passionate observations on architecture and art, morality, commerce, and politics will ignite debates for years to come." –John Guare

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