Reviews - What do customers think about The Contemporary Guesthouse: Building in the Garden?
A fantastic reference for anyone interested in residential design Aug 30, 2006
i was most impressed by this truly valuable publication - a must for anyone's library interested in efficient design, architecture and entertaining.
Exciting cross section of contemporary architecture! Aug 28, 2006
This book is consistently wonderful. As a collection of small scale architectural works, it illustrates that small in size can be large in ambition and accomplishment. Sirefman uses the guest house to represent an important cross section of contemporary architecture, and the book is a gem.
The guest house (as a "type") is generally considered second string to the main house architecturally, but this collection argues that it doesn't have to be. The guest house's transitory, secondary nature allows it a freedom that a primary house does not have. The projects in the book have playfulness, eccentricity, quirks, and drama (sometimes all at once) that are immediately compelling. But the dialogue between main house and guest house is not the primary emphasis of the book - instead the best projects here are visual essays about the guest house's place in the garden. Many projects here play with the question that F L Wright asked Philip Johnson at the Glass House: "Well, are we inside or are we outside?"
High points include the luminous and dazzling Mountain Tree House by Mack Scogin, or the brooding, poetic entries from two Japanese architects (Satoshi Okada, Atelier Hitoshi Abe).
The selection of projects is refreshingly international. Although weighted toward the New York area, the most compelling projects are far from the madding crowd - coming from Mittagong, Australia, Dillard, Georgia, or Duluth, Minnesota. It's an interesting statement on the current dispersal of design talent that what's shown here from Oklahoma City, for example, is more accomplished than anything on the pages by New York architects.