Architecture in Context by Brent C. Brolin is a classic in the field of urban architecture. In the 1980s, the idea of contextual architecture was still new and radical. Brolin’s influential book discusses “the spirit of the place”, as opposed to modernism’s injunction to be true to the “spirit of the times”.
The richly illustrated book analyses the different ways in which architects have approached the problem of relating new buildings to old. It challenges the presently accepted guidelines for fitting new with old – such as the use of similar massing and materials, and continuing existing cornice lines – showing buildings that break these cardinal rules, yet remain in harmony with their surroundings. The key to their success is their use of ornament, whether contemporary or traditional Discussed are the ways in which anti-ornament prejudices of modernism have led us to play down the extraordinary ability of ornament to bridge the gap between new and old.
– Brent C. Brolin, Architecture in Context: Fitting New Buildings with Old, Van Nostrand Reinhold, 1980
The book is in good condition. The dust jacket is tidy except for the red colour of the spine which is faded out because of exposure to sunlight. There is also some slight yellowing on the edges of the pages. The previous owner has signed his book on the endpaper.