My first introduction to David Hockney’s work was while attending a mid-century modernism course at the University of British Columbia. It was a typical wet autumn day and as I sat in a cold, dark auditorium, my professor threw Hockney’s A Bigger Splash onto the screen. There was something about this large scale colourful painting of a California backyard swimming pool, that prompted me to start planning a sunny vacation.
Continue reading “A Bigger Splash. A Bigger Book.”
On October 26th, we hosted the launch of the latest in the SALA Modern House Series, Copp House by Adele Weder with photography by Michael Perlmutter.
In 1950, a young Vancouver architectural apprentice was handed a small house project that his boss was too busy to take on. The apprentice, Ron Thom, took the simple plan and rectangular foundation that had been roughed in, and transformed it into a groundbreaking work of architecture that gained national fame. Inspired by Frank Lloyd Wright and Richard Neutra, but using local wood and paying careful attention to its verdant oceanside setting, Thom created a landmark for the new architectural movement known as West Coast Modernism. The client, Dr. Harold Copp, was himself a trailblazer, the first head of the physiology department in the University of British Columbia’s new Faculty of Medicine and a research pioneer. Generously illustrated with both vintage and contemporary architectural photography, line drawings, and photographs of the architect and residents, the Copp House is the story of a cultural landmark on the shores of Vancouver.
By now we’re all familiar with hygge, the Danish concept of cosiness that has become an international phenomenon in the past few years, largely thanks to Meik’s book on the topic.
But what is lykke? Pronounced luu-kah, it’s the Danish word for happiness. Danes have been shown to be the happiest people in the world, and Meik definitely fits that bill, as the CEO of The Happiness Research Institute in Copenhagen. In this witty and informative book, Meik goes beyond the woolly socks and warm beverages of hygge to get at what really makes Danes so happy, and what the rest of the world can learn from them. He also travels across the globe on a quest to uncover the secrets of the very happiest people from Dubai to Rio de Janeiro, taking back to his native country their tips, tricks, and unique approaches to a fulfilled life. Here is Meik sharing a little insight into what he does and how he does it with our clients in our 50 Water St showroom.
La Maison de Verre (literally ‘The House of Glass’) is a modernist masterpiece that almost nobody has ever seen. Here, for the first time in English, is it’s inside story.
Continue reading “Book Review | La Maison de Verre”
“This garden is made for my camera” says Marco Valdivia. Unlike the Wirtzes’ commissioned gardens, this former kitchen garden was never conceived as a formal composition: a complete work of art. Rather, it is a working nursery in active use, a laboratory for continuous experimentation, in which plants are moved, transferred to other plots or to gardens in progress elsewhere.
Few landscape designers are more admired than Belgium’s Jacques Wirtz, as seen with the huge success of The Wirtz Gardens, published in the fall of 2004. The Wirtz Gardens surveyed 57 private and public gardens designed by Wirtz, many in collaboration with his two sons, Martin and Peter, in locations spanning the globe. Like the veteran art dealer whose personal collection one imagines to be stupendous, the volume raised the question of what Wirtz’s own garden looked like.
Continue reading “Book Review | The Wirtz Private Garden”
It all began with a young boy, Benedikt Taschen(above), selling his paintings of vampires on the sidewalks of Germany in 1970. Ten years later, through passion for images, words, photography, film, and support from his family and mentors, Benedikt opened a comic book shop in his native city of Cologne.
Benedikt as a boy, the first Taschen bookstore, their first publication, present day headquarters
This year marks the 30th anniversary of Taschen books. They continue to stick to their credo: don’t underestimate or bore your audience.
Continue reading “Taschen | Passion in Print”