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From Bauhaus to Our House af Tom Wolfe
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From Bauhaus to Our House (original 1981; udgave 1999)

af Tom Wolfe (Forfatter)

MedlemmerAnmeldelserPopularitetGennemsnitlig vurderingOmtaler
1,1331512,845 (3.59)17
The strange saga of American architecture in the 20th century makes for both comedy and intellectual excitement as Wolfe debunks the Euro gods of modern and postmodern architecture and their American counterparts.
Medlem:CraigLinn
Titel:From Bauhaus to Our House
Forfattere:Tom Wolfe (Forfatter)
Info:Bantam (1999), 128 pages
Samlinger:Dit bibliotek
Vurdering:
Nøgleord:Ingen

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From Bauhaus to Our House af Tom Wolfe (1981)

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» Se også 17 omtaler

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Ugliness and impracticality in the name of progress are not really progress and there is no justification for ugliness and impracticality.

I see these homes. There is a riverside home I admire, built into a hill on a riverbend with a lovely view. However, this home has a flat roof, which was a popular architectural feature at the time it was built. We are in a northern location with lots of heavy snow. No matter how lovely the home, or how cheap the price, I would never, ever, buy a flat roofed house in this climate. But it is progressive, it is "modern". Hopefully, the owners see the style as worth having a perpetually leaking roof.

I see what these ideas have led to. Contractors build houses without architectural guidance, while still borrowing their ideas. Now I see plenty of houses that; well, one can only presume that a house exists, because of the evidence of a garage. You drive by and see a garage and the hint that the building continues on and that the garage may be part of an overall larger structure and that a home may indeed, exist somewhere behind that garage. I call this particular architectural style "anti-curb appeal".

Regardless of that, other people are free to live in whatever house they can tolerate and I have my own tastes. My home is very old, built while this little rural town was riding the crest of a "spa" boom. It is tall, well built and graciously proportioned. We enjoy plenty of natural light through our tall, plentiful windows. The floor joists are made from trees that were squared off. The snow slides right off the steeply pitched roof. As we live in the north, there are a few hot days in summer, but the old hardwoods in the yard provide shade, the high ceilings ventilate the heat upwards and the cross breezes through the screened windows make air conditioning unnecessary. While there are a few things I would change, like re-converting the previous owner's man cave back into a garage, a more efficient floor plan within the existing structure, and replacing the mid-century stone porch with a reproduction of the original wood porch, I love my house and it is perfect for the way we use it.

I think Wolfe was right about Courbusier being a fascist; I am sure that if he had his way my house would be razed and replaced with a flat roofed, concrete cube with a couple of windows. A home I would hate looking at, and a home I would hate living in; a house I would not want to come home to. After all, I can live with other people's ugly architecture, it only offends my eye. Having no other choice but to live in ugly house; own an ugly house, would offend my very being. ( )
  Equestrienne | Jan 5, 2021 |
Tom Wolfe is really great at making a big fuss without saying much. At least in the first half of the book. It's like a big kerfuffley swarm of words with little bits of thought floating around somewhere in there. Wading through it can be a little tedious. Often, I also have completely opposite taste in buildings. About half the time he would mock a design with scorn, and I'd look it up and find myself delighted by it.

The second half pulls together a little more when he focuses on the different movements and factions which emerged, and the politics and conflicts between them and their personalities.

I also don't like how mean spirited and unkind Tom Wolfe is when describing people he doesn't like. It's tedious. What a jerk. ( )
1 stem reg_lt | Feb 7, 2020 |
Wolfe's effort to critique 20th Century architecture is not particularly well thought out, and now times have changed to include buildings he said would never get built. Nevertheless, it is witty and highly readable. ( )
2 stem dbsovereign | Jan 26, 2016 |
This is a very readable account of the history of modern architecture. Its undoubtedly opinionated and contentious, but it wears its prejudices openly and honestly. Perhaps the highest accolade for a book is that it makes you want to read more, to get other viewpoints and know more fully what went on, and this books does that in spades. Highly recommended.
  nandadevi | Apr 14, 2014 |
I'm no fan of books on architectural criticism, but I am attracted by Tom Wolfe's prose. So, on a slow day, I read this. He doesn't like post-modernist Buildings. In a perfect world, I might care more. ( )
1 stem DinadansFriend | Jan 27, 2014 |
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The strange saga of American architecture in the 20th century makes for both comedy and intellectual excitement as Wolfe debunks the Euro gods of modern and postmodern architecture and their American counterparts.

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