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Gift for an Architecture buff...

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
Hi guys. A member of our team at work is retiring at the end of next month and I wanted to get him a parting gift. This is someone who has acted a a mentor for me and really took time out to pass on his knowledge and experiences to me at an early point in my career.

He's a bit of an architecture buff so I was thinking to get him a nice book (other ideas welcome) as a farewell gift. I know next to nothing about the field of architecture, so any ideas on something decent would be nice. I don't really have a set budget for this but am not looking for something too extravagant (keep it under $500). He really appreciates reading and is a bit of a collector of books as well.

Any thoughts/ideas would be appreciated.
post #2 of 10
A nice lego set.
post #3 of 10
there are plenty of others on here who know more architecture books than I, but from the top of my head the complete works of Renzo Piano (comes in volumes), ditto for Ando. My better half (an architect) really likes "John Pawson: Plain Space".
post #4 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by 7AD View Post

A nice lego set.

Yup. Lego has kits for the Guggenheim, Falling Water, and a few others.
post #5 of 10
It would help to know more about what your colleague likes and has already. Does he like a particular epoch, style or architect?

I think that giving the complete works of one or more architects could be risky (he may not be into that architect's work) and/or overkill unless the fellow has really expressed great enthusiasm for someone's work (and doesn't already have the books, obviously).

Very nice books on either various building types or a series on arch. history such as those by Abrams, Electa, etc. might be easier. Good architecture films are few and far between. A trip would be over your budget.

Try googling "architecture gifts" or "architectural gifts". I am sure there are stores or sites that might be of help (although the majority will probably have a ton of Frank Lloyd Wright crap and little else...).
post #6 of 10
post #7 of 10

One of the more recent books of the work of Santiago Calatrava—who doesn't like his work? Get something photo heavy so it can be a good coffee table book. Nobody wants to read a bunch of words—I'm looking at you Le Corbusier Le Grand.

 

I've also seen a modern architecture pop-up book—you know, like for kids, with stuff that pops out, except it has famous modern buildings.

post #8 of 10
post #9 of 10
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by gomestar View Post

there are plenty of others on here who know more architecture books than I, but from the top of my head the complete works of Renzo Piano (comes in volumes), ditto for Ando. My better half (an architect) really likes "John Pawson: Plain Space".
Quote:
Originally Posted by venessian View Post

It would help to know more about what your colleague likes and has already. Does he like a particular epoch, style or architect?

I think that giving the complete works of one or more architects could be risky (he may not be into that architect's work) and/or overkill unless the fellow has really expressed great enthusiasm for someone's work (and doesn't already have the books, obviously).

Very nice books on either various building types or a series on arch. history such as those by Abrams, Electa, etc. might be easier. Good architecture films are few and far between. A trip would be over your budget.

Try googling "architecture gifts" or "architectural gifts". I am sure there are stores or sites that might be of help (although the majority will probably have a ton of Frank Lloyd Wright crap and little else...).

I would say that one of his favorite architects is Frank Gehry. He has visited many of his building worldwide and routinely comments on his work in Manhattan (Spruce Street) and Seattle. As far as a style, I'd say that he leans toward modernism, but appreciates a variety of styles. To be honest, I'm not adept enough to pick out differences in styles based on a quick conversation about "x" building.

He does admire Wright's work (we had a conversation about him yesterday), however, I feel that a book solely on Wright's work would seem to be a bit expected.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kent Wang View Post

One of the more recent books of the work of Santiago Calatrava—who doesn't like his work? Get something photo heavy so it can be a good coffee table book. Nobody wants to read a bunch of words—I'm looking at you Le Corbusier Le Grand.

 

I've also seen a modern architecture pop-up book—you know, like for kids, with stuff that pops out, except it has famous modern buildings.


Thanks for the suggestions.
post #10 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by rich_202 View Post

I would say that one of his favorite architects is Frank Gehry. He has visited many of his building worldwide and routinely comments on his work in Manhattan (Spruce Street) and Seattle. As far as a style, I'd say that he leans toward modernism, but appreciates a variety of styles. To be honest, I'm not adept enough to pick out differences in styles based on a quick conversation about "x" building.

He does admire Wright's work (we had a conversation about him yesterday), however, I feel that a book solely on Wright's work would seem to be a bit expected.

Thanks for the suggestions.
I agree: forget the Wright book.

The great thing about Gehry is that he also produces a ton of design work. The beautiful Knoll chairs or the famous fish lamps are way over your budget, but one suggestion (depending on your colleague's taste in furniture) would be to give him a Gehry "Twist Cube" or "Color Twist Cube", by Heller. These cubes function as stools, side tables, inside, outside, and are very affordable. They are derived from the Hannover ÜSTRA tower, etc.

They cost $250 each, so for under your budget you could get one and several very nice books, or 2 and a nice book for slightly over. They are available all over the place.

TWIST CUBE (Silver)
twistcube1.jpg
twistcube2.jpg

COLOR TWIST CUBES (Yellow, black, magenta, red, blue, white, green)
colortwistcubes.jpg

gehrytowerhannover.jpg

Alternatively, there is the Gehry “Cloud Lamp”, by Belux (division of Vitra). The only range in your budget are the pendant lamps.

CLOUD PENDANT LAMP (3 sizes, from $400 > $580)
CLO_217.jpg

CLOUD TABLE LAMP ($889)
CLOUD_22_on_f.jpg

CLOUD FLOOR LAMP ($1099)
CLOUD_10_on_f_grau.jpg

There are so many books on Gehry. Here are some that I would recommend:
Frank O. Gehry: The Complete Works by Francesco Dal Co and Kurt W. Forster (good, but only up to 2003)
Frank Gehry, Architect by Jean-Louis Cohen, J. Fiona Ragheb, Frank Gehry and William Mitchell (again good, but also only up to 2003)
Conversations with Frank Gehry by Barbara Isenberg (interesting)
Gehry Talks by Mildred Friedman and Michael Sorkin (earlier version of the Isenberg book)
Frank O. Gehry: Since 1997 by Germano Celant (could overlap with the Dal Co/Forster or Cohen book)
Frank Gehry: The Houses by Mildred Friedman and Sylvia Lavin
Frank Gehry: On Line by Esther da Costa Meyer (drawings and process)
Frank O. Gehry: Guggenheim Museum Bilbao by Juan Ignacio Vidarte, Coosje Van Bruggen, and Frank O. Gehry (excellent)
Iron: Erecting the Walt Disney Concert Hall by Gil Garcetti and Frank O. Gehry (mainly photographs of the building process, OK but a bit romantic)

The “El Croquis” and “GA” (“Global Architecture”) monographs are all excellent.
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