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Katsura: Imperial Villa [Hardcover]

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Item description for Katsura: Imperial Villa by Arata Isozaki, Yoshiharu Matsumura, Manfred Speidel, Bruno Taut & Richard Sadleir...

This book presents a detailed history of Katsura, the 17th century Imperial Palace in Kyoto, Japan that is a pivotal work of Japanese Architecture, often described as the "quintessence of Japanese taste." First revealed to the modern architectural world by Bruno Taut, the great German architect, in the early 20th century, Katsura stunned and then excited the architectural community of the West. Le Corbusier and Walter Gropius, pillars of the Modernist establishment, were fascinated by Katsura's "modernity." They saw in its orthogonal and modular spaces, devoid of decoration, clear parallels to contemporary Modernism, going so far as to proclaim Katsura a "historical" example of Modernity. This book documents the palace in detail, combining newly commissioned photographs, detailed drawings, archival material and historical analysis.

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Item Specifications...

Pages   397
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 1.5" Width: 10" Height: 11.25"
Weight:   4.8 lbs.
Binding  Hardcover
Release Date   Dec 1, 2005
Publisher   Phaidon Press
ISBN  190431337X  
ISBN13  9781904313373  

Availability  0 units.

More About Arata Isozaki, Yoshiharu Matsumura, Manfred Speidel, Bruno Taut & Richard Sadleir

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! Arata Isosaki is a leading Japanese architect. His works include the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, the Olympic Stadium in Barcelona, the Volksbank Center am Postdamer Platz in Berlin, the Team Disney Building in Orlando, and the Tokyo University of Art and Design.

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Product Categories

1Books > Special Features > New & Used Textbooks > Architecture
2Books > Subjects > History > Asia > Japan
3Books > Subjects > Professional & Technical > Architecture > Architects, A-Z > General
4Books > Subjects > Professional & Technical > Architecture > Building Types & Styles > General
5Books > Subjects > Professional & Technical > Architecture > Building Types & Styles > Specific Styles
6Books > Subjects > Professional & Technical > Architecture > General

Reviews - What do customers think about Katsura: Imperial Villa?

Worth Owning !  Nov 26, 2006
If you want some solicitude and repose, here is a book for you.
This book is extremely well crafted to show the essence of Katsura.
Status of Katsura in Japanese garden art production does not
demand any further explanation. Katsura is to Japan, what Alhambra is to Andalusia!

In it, I found that disciplinary simplicity can be profound and strong.
Especially in a world where one is inundated with images and media.
Katsura is an art that invites physical presence and spiritual
meditation. In that sense, it's an irony and a paradox to recommend to
experience Katsura thru a book...

Katsura is an art of water & island body formation/ relationally
positioning pavilions / sculpting stones/ borrowing landscapes/ laying
stone/ perfecting the shoji screens and combing the thatched roofs
naming the places and tea pavilions to arouse imagination/ etc, etc, etc.

However, what makes it stand out is that each mode of art does not stand
alone. It had synergetic effect by being relational to one and another.
Combined together, the density of experience exponentially grow to
challenge infinitum. Hence, here is an art that tells us, "the whole is
eternally greater than the parts."

The parts are orchestrated in such a way to arouse the art of seduction.
Not in a flamboyant manner, but in a subtly simple manner. Photographic
images in the book tell us the multi-faceted, yet almost tea-ceremonially
calm, story of Katsura. The book will make you retreat from the bustling
noisiness of daily life.

Isozaki's nicely written essay propels the experience of Kasura to
a thinking level. He has placed his viewpoint in contrast to the earlier
writers such as Bruno Taut/ Sutemi Horiguchi/ Kenzo Tange. Tange's
earlier writing was Mondrian-like, cropping Katsura to a abstract level.
The essay by Isojaki sets the curatorial tone to the images. It's very
expository, revealing indigenous and rustic elements.

The book also provides the hidden dimension of buildings. By providing
field-measured drawings, readers will be able to analyze quintessential
element of plans and sections of traditional buildings. Five past
writings of world-class architects and critics are also part of
Excellent photographs, details, text, and drawings  Apr 21, 2006
I have been to Katsura several times, and have several books on Katsura villa, and this new book is the best.
This is how architectural books should be produced and photographed so other architects and people interested in architecture can actually learn and use the book not only as a beautiful catalog but as a tool.

The beautiful photographs are architecturally photograhed in 1 point perspective except for details, gardens, and exterior. This is helpful as you can deduct the proportion and scale of the rooms. Most of the drawings have measurements, and are very well drawn.

The introduction and text by Isozaki is excellent for understanding Katsura and Japanese architectural idealogy. Additionally, there are several past texts by Tange, Taut, Gropius, and etc. to get different perspectives.

Katsura, along with several temples and villas have been meticulously maintained for the last 400 years.

Traditional architecture of Japan  Feb 28, 2006
The best way to know the traditional architecture of Japan. Very good pictures, technical drawings and very interesting articles explaining the Katsura Villa.

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