Kenneth Frampton

Kenneth Frampton is Ware Professor of Architecture at Columbia University.

  • Studies in Tectonic Culture

    Studies in Tectonic Culture

    The Poetics of Construction in Nineteenth and Twentieth Century Architecture

    Kenneth Frampton and John Cava

    Composed of ten essays and an epilogue that trace the history of contemporary form as an evolving poetic of structure and construction, the book's analytical framework rests on Frampton's close readings of key French and German, and English sources from the eighteenth century to the present.

    Kenneth Frampton's long-awaited follow-up to his classic A Critical History of Modern Architecture is certain to influence any future debate on the evolution of modern architecture. Studies in Tectonic Culture is nothing less than a rethinking of the entire modern architectural tradition. The notion of tectonics as employed by Frampton—the focus on architecture as a constructional craft—constitutes a direct challenge to current mainstream thinking on the artistic limits of postmodernism, and suggests a convincing alternative. Indeed, Frampton argues, modern architecture is invariably as much about structure and construction as it is about space and abstract form.

    Composed of ten essays and an epilogue that trace the history of contemporary form as an evolving poetic of structure and construction, the book's analytical framework rests on Frampton's close readings of key French and German, and English sources from the eighteenth century to the present. He clarifies the various turns that structural engineering and tectonic imagination have taken in the work of such architects as Perret, Wright, Kahn, Scarpa, and Mies, and shows how both constructional form and material character were integral to an evolving architectural expression of their work. Frampton also demonstrates that the way in which these elements are articulated from one work to the next provides a basis upon which to evaluate the works as a whole. This is especially evident in his consideration of the work of Perret, Mies, and Kahn and the continuities in their thought and attitudes that linked them to the past.

    Frampton considers the conscious cultivation of the tectonic tradition in architecture as an essential element in the future development of architectural form, casting a critical new light on the entire issue of modernity and on the place of much work that has passed as "avant-garde."

    A copublication of the Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies and The MIT Press.

    • Hardcover $95.00 £70.95
    • Paperback $49.95 £40.00

Contributor

  • The CIAM Discourse on Urbanism, 1928–1960

    The CIAM Discourse on Urbanism, 1928–1960

    Eric Mumford

    The first complete history of CIAM, an international movement whose mission was to revolutionize architecture and create an agenda for modern urbanism.

    CIAM (Congres Internationaux d'Architecture Moderne), founded in Switzerland in 1928, was an avant-garde association of architects intended to advance both modernism and internationalism in architecture. CIAM saw itself as an elite group revolutionizing architecture to serve the interests of society. Its members included some of the best-known architects of the twentieth century, such as Le Corbusier, Walter Gropius, and Richard Neutra, but also hundreds of others who looked to it for doctrines on how to shape the urban environment in a rapidly changing world.

    In this first book-length history of the organization, architectural historian Eric Mumford focuses on CIAM's discourse to trace the development and promotion of its influential concept of the "Functional City." He views official doctrines and pronouncements in relation to the changing circumstances of the members, revealing how CIAM in the 1930s began to resemble a kind of syndicalist party oriented toward winning over any suitable authority, regardless of political orientation. Mumford also looks at CIAM's efforts after World War II to find a new basis for a socially engaged architecture and describes the attempts by the group of younger members called Team 10 to radically revise CIAM's mission in the 1950s, efforts that led to the organization's dissolution in 1959.

    • Hardcover $80.00 £59.95
    • Paperback $40.95 £32.00
  • Inside Architecture

    Inside Architecture

    Vittorio Gregotti

    Inside Architecture is a concise, insightful examination of the role the modernist project has played in late twentieth-century building, as well as an attempt to reconcile the dilemmas and shortcomings of modern orthodoxy with a renewed vision of modernism.Since the 1950s, Vittorio Gregotti has constructed a critical position that is probably without peer among practicing architects. Through his experiments with the neo- avant-gardes in 1963, his editorship of Casabella from 1982 to 1995, and his teaching, practice, and writing, Gregotti's voice has influenced almost every recent architectural debate. Inside Architecture, his first major work to be translated into English, balances a series of architectual themes concerning the theoretical debate surrounding modernism and tradition with the more practical affairs of the architect. Gregotti first identifies the elements of mass culture and public institutions that have led to the deterioration of natural and man-made environments. He then investigates eight issues—precision, technique, monumentality, modification, atopia, simplicity, procedure, and image—that influence the activities of contemporary architects. Gregotti is particularly suspicious of the deconstructivist argument and its heavy reliance on literary models. And he provides an incisive critique of the recent interest in modernist aesthetics, warning against reviving the forms of an old movement without considering the cultural and social criteria that once gave it purpose and meaning. The Graham Foundation / MIT Press Series in Contemporary Architectural Discourse

    • Paperback $20.00 £14.99
  • Architecture of New Prague 1895–1945

    Architecture of New Prague 1895–1945

    Rostislav Svacha

    Encyclopedic in its coverage, The Architecture of New Prague documents the architects, structures, and theoretical underpinnings that helped to shape Prague's cultural heritage and present-day artistic spirit.

    foreword by Kenneth Frampton essay by Eric Dluhosch

    Prague is a one of Europe's oldest and most beautiful cities. Originally published in Czech in 1985, this seminal work focuses on the architecture of Prague from the turn of the century to the end of the Second World War: a rich matrix within which to place the figures who created the powerful, innovative spirit of modern Czech architecture.

    Encyclopedic in its coverage, The Architecture of New Prague documents the architects, structures, and theoretical underpinnings that helped to shape Prague's cultural heritage and present-day artistic spirit. Three supplements appear in this edition: a directory of approximately 1,200 buildings (with street addresses), 25 short biographies of the main Prague architects of the time, and a revised bibliography. The more than 300 illustrations, all commissioned for the book, were taken by architectural photographer Jan Maly.

    The text provides detailed coverage of the most important architects and their buildings, many of which have never been documented in any English-language publication. There are also valuable insights into the cultural conditions that helped to shape the Czech capital. An introductory chapter takes up Prague's urbanistic development and its context within international architectural movements.

    • Hardcover $75.00 £51.95
  • Style and Epoch

    Moisei Ginzburg

    Originally published in Moscow in 1924, Moisei Iakovlevich Ginzburg's book Style and Epoch is considered by many to be the single most important piece of writing on architecture to come out of Russia in this century.

    Preface by Kenneth FramptonMoisei Iakovlevich Ginzburg, one of the founders and chief spokesmen of the Constructivist movement in Soviet architecture, combined the talents of scholar, theoretician, writer, and practicing architect. Originally published in Moscow in 1924, his book Style and Epoch is considered by many to be the single most important piece of writing on architecture to come out of Russia in this century. It elucidates the aims and ideals of a Constructivist architecture, providing what is essentially an official manifesto of the Constructivist program and becoming the cornerstone of virtually all of the Constructivist writings that followed. Its translation makes available to English readers one of the seminal works of modern architectural theory. Style and Epoch has often been compared to Le Corbusier's Vers Une Architecture (published the year before Ginzburg's book) as a classic of early twentieth-century architectural thought. In it, Ginzburg expresses admiration for the products of engineering and machine technology and voices dismay at the failure to apply the means of that technology to improving architecture. By virtue of his unusually broad education; Ginzburg was able to draw upon elements of Western architecture and literature in such a way as to connect the Russian avant-garde with the simultaneously evolving network of progressive European movements. The result is a cogent analysis of architectural composition from antiquity to modern times in which Ginzburg attempts to plot those universal laws that determine any work of architecture, and proposes a systematic design method that is both rational and humane. An Oppositions Book.

    • Hardcover $37.50
  • Spoken Into The Void

    Collected Essays by Adolf Loos, 1897–1900

    Adolf Loos

    The Vienna Jubilee Exhibition of 1898 provided the occasion for these remarkable essays by the Austrian architect, theorist, and irreverent critic of his own culture, Adolf Loos. The rational underpinnings of his later accusation that "ornament is crime," first appear in these polemical thrusts at the stylized work of Viennese sucessionists Joseph Hoffmann, Otto Wagner, Hermann Obrist, and Gustav Klimt, among others.

    • Hardcover $35.00
    • Paperback $15.95
  • The Architecture of the City

    The Architecture of the City

    Aldo Rossi

    Aldo Rossi, a practicing architect and leader of the Italian architectural movement La Tendenza, is also one of the most influential theorists writing today. The Architecture of the City is his major work of architectural and urban theory. In part a protest against functionalism and the Modern Movement, in part an attempt to restore the craft of architecture to its position as the only valid object of architectural study, and in part an analysis of the rules and forms of the city's construction, the book has become immensely popular among architects and design students.

    • Hardcover $35.00 £24.95
    • Paperback $36.00 £28.00
  • Essays in Architectural Criticism

    Modern Architecture and Historical Change

    Alan Colquhoun

    This collection of 17 of Alan Colquhoun's essays marks a watershed in the development of architectural thinking over the past three decades, comprising a virtual "theory of Modernism" in architecture.

    Preface by Kenneth Frampton. Winner of the 1985 Architectural Critics Award for the best book published on architectural criticism over the past three years.

    Since the early 1950s, Alan Colquhoun's criticism and theory have acted as a conscience to a generation of architects. His rigor and conceptual clarity have consistently stimulated debate and have served as an impetus for the pursuit of new directions in both theory and practice. This collection of 17 of his essays marks a watershed in the development of architectural thinking over the past three decades, comprising a virtual "theory of Modernism" in architecture.

    In his earliest essays, Colquhoun concentrated on themes that for him comprised the modernist attitude in architecture - language, typology, and the structure of form. His stance since then has consistently been to try to relate these issues to current practice and to analyze the nature of architectural expression in relation to culture.

    An Oppositions Book.

    • Hardcover $40.00
    • Paperback $22.00
  • A Scientific Autobiography

    A Scientific Autobiography

    Aldo Rossi

    A lyrical memoir by one of the major figures of postmodernist architecture; with drawings of architectural projects prepared especially for the book.

    This revealing memoir by Aldo Rossi (1937–1997), one of the most visible and controversial figures ever on the international architecture scene, intermingles discussions of Rossi's architectural projects—including the major literary and artistic influences on his work—with his personal history. Drawn from notebooks Rossi kept beginning in 1971, these ruminations and reflections range from his obsession with theater to his concept of architecture as ritual.

    • Hardcover $27.50 £19.95
    • Paperback $14.95 £11.50