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May Day with a Book. A review of readings about architecture (and more)

30 of April '21

The long-awaited May holiday is upon us! The continuing restrictions on the closure of cultural sites and the forecast slump in the weather are conducive to devoting the first days of May to reading. We therefore invite you to a review of five (architectural and otherwise) suggestions, just in time for the long weekend.

He (and I)

Recently published by the Center for Architecture and the National Institute of Architecture and Urbanism, a book by the collaborator of the "pope of modernism" Jerzy Soltan, "He and I. On Architecture and Le Corbusier" is, as Blazej Ciarkowski writes in his review, a description of a relationship with a Master and a Friend (or maybe a Friend and a Master?).

A warm picture, exuding positive emotions. It may indeed be a bit indiscriminate in places, but doesn't each of us create just such an image of loved ones?

© Center for Architecture

You can read an excerpt from the book (in the latest issue of A&B) and even listen to it (excerpts from the book are read by Vladimir Press, we recommend it!).

UGO eats here

This book has everything you could possibly need for May. UGO TU EAT is a publication celebrating 10 years of Hugo Kowalski's architectural firm, and what better way to celebrate than with good food and fun? In the book you will find recipes, descriptions and axonometrics of forty-five favorite sandwiches of UGO studio architects, their colleagues, clients and friends interspersed with puzzles, quotes, games and crosswords. Enjoy!

Architecture (okładka) „UGO TU JE”, UGO
Architecture (kanapka)

Photo credit: A&B


A suggestion for lovers of the do-it-yourself method. Published this year by the publishing house of the Fraternity Trojka of Poznan's "Rozbrat" squat, Matthew Gierszon's book "The Segal Method. On Community Housing" is a monograph on the British architect, an icon of the "self-build" movement.

© Trojka Brotherhood Publishing Company

The housing estates he designed and/or built to his solutions are flagship examples of how resident participation in construction makes sense. It can lead to the creation of good places to live on a low budget, and can foster community building and the acquisition of new skills by the builders, writes Maciej Jagielak in his review of the book (you can read the whole thing here).


The Wroclaw branch of SARP has recently launched a new series of publications dedicated to architects who have lived to see their round jubilees of creativity and activity in the association. The first of the characters in the Jubilaci series of books is Zdzislaw Pawlak, (as we read on the first pages - he is most often affectionately called Zdzich in the Wroclaw architectural community) who has been designing in Lower Silesia for more than 70 years, and the author of the publication is Beata Stobiecka. In the book you will find not only descriptions and photographs of the architect's projects, but also private photos, sketches and memories.

„Zdzisław Pawlak - architekt kompletny”, Beata Stobiecka

Photo: A&B

One of the chapters of the book tells about the architect's own house (you can peek into its nooks and crannies thanks to the series "Domokrążcy"):

Zdzich's house is another very important part of his life. He designed it in the early 1960s, including the interiors and all its furnishings. [...] From the beginning until today, the house is virtually the same, and - it should be emphasized - this arrangement is still functional, and surprisingly up-to-date, one could even say: fashionable and "up-to-date". [Zdzichu did not replace any object he designed with a new one. He composed everything according to his own needs and taste once and for all.

architecture and art

What does the dialogue between architecture and art look like today? The same problem from different perspectives and in different contexts is considered by Katarzyna Banasik-Petri, writing about the Icelandic Studio Granda, Bartosz Haduch about the Herzog & de Meuron studio, Barbara Stec about thethe work of Peter Zumthor, and Piotr Wróbel on the airport project by Zaha Hadid in the collection of essays "On the Dialogue of Architecture and Art," published by Krakow's Andrzej Frycz Modrzewski Academy. Andrzej Frycz Modrzewski Academy.

 „O dialogu
architektury i sztuki. Wybór esejów”, praca zbiorowa pod redakcją Katarzyny Banasik‑Petri

© Andrzej Frycz Modrzewski Krakow Academy

The presented monograph is a contribution to the discussion on how to design common space in times of political conflicts, growing economic and social inequalities - and pandemics, one would like to add - writes Artur Jasinski in his review of the book, which you will find in the May issue of A&B.

For more book suggestions, see our Highlights of Architecture and Books tabs.

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