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Marc Kristal on Immaterial World

One of my favorite writers in Dwell is our contributing editor Marc Kristal. His latest story for us—the centerpiece of the issue, if you ask me—is a mad dash around New York City finding high design in all five boroughs. When he's not searching his coat pockets for his Metrocard, Kristal works penning books in addition to magazine stories. I had a chat with him about his latest, Immaterial World: Transparency in Architecture out later this month from Monacelli Press.
March 15, 2011
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A New View on the Glass House

We've all seen images of the Glass House, the iconic architectural landmark that Philip Johnson built in New Canaan, Connecticut in 1949. Breaking from the traditional view on the property, photographer James Welling spent three years photographing the Glass House, using digital cameras set on a tripod and holding a variety of filters in front of the lens to a chieve a colorful, almost psychedelic effect. As Welling described it in an interview with Artforum, the use of filters enabled his project to become "a laboratory for ideas about transparency, reflectivity and color." Here's a peek at some images from the new book, due out from Damiani on April 30th. All images courtesy of David Zwirner, New York.  
March 14, 2011
Professor Suleiman Osman of George Washington University in Washington, DC.

Brownstone Brooklyn

In our New York issue, on newsstands now, we take a look at all five boroughs of America's biggest, most vital city. One that ends up getting quite a bit of play in Dwell is increasingly-less-scrappy Brooklyn. A subject professor Suleiman Osman of George Washington University takes up in his new book The Invention of Brownstone Brooklyn: Gentrification and the Search for Authenticity in Postwar New York. Out this month from Oxford University Press, the book takes a look at the wave of "brownstoners" who moved into what was then known as "South Brooklyn" (you might now know it as Boerum Hill, Cobble Hill, Clinton HIll and other neighborhoods) in search of cheap real estate, a sense of neighborhoody history, and an antidote to suburban living. I chatted with Osman about the book, the future of Brooklyn, and the legacy of the brownstoners of the late 60s and early 70s.
March 1, 2011
This photo, taken from, shows off three views of Paris's Librarie la Hune.

The Language of Bookshops

In the latest installment of Three Buildings, a semi-regular series where I ask people from all over the creative spectrum to muse on a trio of buildings or spaces that they love, I got in touch with Peter Sokolowski, editor-at-large for Merriam-Webster's dictionary. Who better to give us an idiosyncratic take on the world's best bookstores than a true guardian of all those precious words? Here's what Peter has to say:
February 23, 2011
Holly Hotchner's selection of books that symbolize the spirit of New York City.

New York Stories

Holly Hotchner knows New York. Here, the born-and-bred Manhattanite—and director of the Museum of Arts and Design—shares her picks for books that symbolize the spirit of her city.
February 19, 2011
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Friday Finds 2.18.11

Every Friday Dwell's editors, designers, and interns share a handful of their favorite blogs, videos, photographs, and stories appearing on the web. What piqued our interest this week? A colorful map documenting the demographics of Chicago, flipbooks filmed and set to 1940's swing music, and the Westminster Dog Show.
February 18, 2011
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An Architect's Pop-Up Book

One of the perks of being a Dwell editor are the various fun surprises that appear in the mail—newly published books, the occasional small product, even the random staple gun (yes, really). One of the more intriguing things to cross my desk recently was Wendy Evans Joseph's unusual monograph, a chunky hardcover book entitled 'Pop Up Architecture.' Yes: a pop-up book illustrating the firms' recent work, from the Holocaust Memorial Garden in Salt lake City to a cantilevered pedestrian bridge in New York City. Here's a peek inside.  
February 15, 2011
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Dostoyevsky, Meet Mendelsund

I recently picked up a copy of Richard Pevear and Larissa Volokhonsky's wonderful translation of War and Peace. I liked it so much—not nearly finished with those 1200 pages yet—that I began hunting down other big works of Russian lit they've done. And through that little search I came across six clever reissues of Dostoyevsky from Vintage books. Pevear and Volokhonsky helm the translation and the jacket design is by the estimable Peter Mendelsund, an in-house designer at Knopf. I've been a fan of his jackets for a while, but got in touch to pick his brain about his graphic translations of not only Dostoevsky, but a whole host of novelists and thinkers.
February 3, 2011
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Piero Lissoni: Recent Architecture

Though the book Piero Lissoni: Recent Work came out from the German house Hatje Cantz last year, it just came across my desk yesterday. Though he's known perhaps firstly as an industrial designer, this tour through the last decade or so of Lissoni's architectural work is awfully rewarding. The Italian designer clarity of vision across residences, hotels, shops, and restaurants is finely honed. And the large-format photographs by Giovanni Gastel remind me that for all the visuals zipping about the web, often the coffee table book is the next best thing to seeing the building itself. Have a look at the slideshow that follows for a glimpse of what our man Piero has been up to.
January 10, 2011