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March 14, 2014
Looking back at one our favorite architecture books from Assouline, Living Architecture: Greatest American Houses of the 20th Century, which shows a different perspective on some of the midcentury's most classic homes.
Mies Van der Rohe's Farnsworth House adorns the cover of the book in a photo by Jason Schmidt.
Mies Van der Rohe's Farnsworth House adorns the cover of the book in a photo by Jason Schmidt.
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Here's the Putterman House by Hugh Newell Jacobson from 1980. This design has it all: modern lines, post-modern adoption of varied forms and reference points, and a very American fascination with rural working buildings. If a house is meant to echo a face
Here's the Putterman House by Hugh Newell Jacobson from 1980. This design has it all: modern lines, post-modern adoption of varied forms and reference points, and a very American fascination with rural working buildings. If a house is meant to echo a face with it's windows and door as eyes and a mouth, this one to me looks like a rabbit. Photo by Victoria Sambunaris.
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Marcel Breuer's Hooper House II in Baltimore, Maryland proves that wonderfully natural materials, like these flagstones used in the walls, are perfectly at home in Bauhaus geometry. The interior courtyard and view out to the landscape create a nice sense
Marcel Breuer's Hooper House II in Baltimore, Maryland proves that wonderfully natural materials, like these flagstones used in the walls, are perfectly at home in Bauhaus geometry. The interior courtyard and view out to the landscape create a nice sense of intimacy while keeping the house in touch with its surroundings. Photo by Raymond Meier.
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Here's a quiet interior of Paul Rudolph's 1955 Cohen House in Sarasota, Florida. This is mid-century American design at its best, all clean lines, open spaces and the lightness of whiteness. Photo by Marlyn Thompson.
Here's a quiet interior of Paul Rudolph's 1955 Cohen House in Sarasota, Florida. This is mid-century American design at its best, all clean lines, open spaces and the lightness of whiteness. Photo by Marlyn Thompson.
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I don't know that I can really get my mind around this one, but the lap pool and office at Frank Gehry's Schnabel House from 1985 is certainly a puzzle. The forms are a bit all over the place, and I'll confess to liking late Gehry over his busy, buzzing e
I don't know that I can really get my mind around this one, but the lap pool and office at Frank Gehry's Schnabel House from 1985 is certainly a puzzle. The forms are a bit all over the place, and I'll confess to liking late Gehry over his busy, buzzing early work. Photo by Jason Schmidt.
Courtesy of 
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Here's another view of the Schnabel House, this time from the back. It's set in LA, though to me this could as easily be some Miami outdoor shopping mall or a groovy Vegas night spot. Photo by Jason Schmidt.
Here's another view of the Schnabel House, this time from the back. It's set in LA, though to me this could as easily be some Miami outdoor shopping mall or a groovy Vegas night spot. Photo by Jason Schmidt.
Courtesy of 
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Here's the cover image in all its glory. Van der Rohe's Farnsworth House is the essential glass house (sorry Philip J) and looks pretty spectacular in the snow. One wonders if those windows are double-paned though. Photo by Jason Schmidt.
Here's the cover image in all its glory. Van der Rohe's Farnsworth House is the essential glass house (sorry Philip J) and looks pretty spectacular in the snow. One wonders if those windows are double-paned though. Photo by Jason Schmidt.
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Here's a view of the Farnsworth House's interior, all clean lines and classic modernist furniture. Pretty perfect geometry if you ask me. Photo by Jason Schmidt.
Here's a view of the Farnsworth House's interior, all clean lines and classic modernist furniture. Pretty perfect geometry if you ask me. Photo by Jason Schmidt.
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I love this photo by Raymond Meier of the Palm Springs Kaufmann House by Richard Neutra. Kaufmann commissioned Fallingwater some ten years earlier and this was his desert retreat.
I love this photo by Raymond Meier of the Palm Springs Kaufmann House by Richard Neutra. Kaufmann commissioned Fallingwater some ten years earlier and this was his desert retreat.
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Here's another take on the Kaufmann House by Neutra, the vertical lines serving as a nice counterpoint to the linear quality of the house. Photo by Raymond Meier.
Here's another take on the Kaufmann House by Neutra, the vertical lines serving as a nice counterpoint to the linear quality of the house. Photo by Raymond Meier.
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Marwan Al Sayed's House of Earth and Light is the most contemporary of what's in the book, and stands in wonderfully tony company. Photo by Jason Schmidt.
Marwan Al Sayed's House of Earth and Light is the most contemporary of what's in the book, and stands in wonderfully tony company. Photo by Jason Schmidt.
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The Babe Ruth of American residential design, Fallingwater by Frank Lloyd Wright continues to dazzle with its shifting planes hovering over the creek. Photo by Victoria Sambunaris
The Babe Ruth of American residential design, Fallingwater by Frank Lloyd Wright continues to dazzle with its shifting planes hovering over the creek. Photo by Victoria Sambunaris
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Here's another view of Fallinwater, this one emphasizing the laterality of the Prairie Style. Wright loved to map his homes across the landscape instead of orienting them vertically, and this one does seem to creep out of the foliage and terrain. Photo by
Here's another view of Fallinwater, this one emphasizing the laterality of the Prairie Style. Wright loved to map his homes across the landscape instead of orienting them vertically, and this one does seem to creep out of the foliage and terrain. Photo by Victoria Sambunaris.
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Mies Van der Rohe's Farnsworth House adorns the cover of the book in a photo by Jason Schmidt.
Mies Van der Rohe's Farnsworth House adorns the cover of the book in a photo by Jason Schmidt.

This large, wonderfully photographed tome by Dominique Browning and Lucy Gilmore serves up the '27 Yankees of American residential design. Fallingwater by Frank Lloyd Wright, the Hooper House II by Marcel Breuer, John Lautner's Elrod House, and the Schindler House by Rudolph Schindler are all present and accounted for. The photography falls to the likes of Robert Polidori, Dwell-favorite Jason Schmidt, Oberto Gili, and others. Suffice it to say, this is a book of lovingly rendered icons, the Hepburns, Monroes, and Liz Taylor's of modernist design. Have a look at this slideshow for a preview of what's inside.

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