Shorter days, rain and falling temperatures only enhance the pleasure of reading. And so, even in November, those who love design and architecture can find many interesting novelties in bookstores.
Among the many titles, here are five that allow us to browse through the most beautiful homes in Milan, immerse ourselves in the colors of the homes of Marrakech and learn about the history of some of the protagonists of design.
But, above all, to reflect on what is behind a creative work. Whether designing a landscape or a newspaper page.
“Interiors in Milan”, 1028-1978 by Enrico Morteo and Orsina Simona Pierini (Hoepli, 120 euros)
From the elegant modernity of masters such as Franco Albini, Ignazio Gardella and Luigi Caccia Dominioni, to the international experiments of Joe Colombo, Ettore Sottsass, Vittoriano Viganò and Nanda Vigo, passing for Vico Magistretti, Minoletti, Mangiarotti and Morassutti, Zanuso, or the Latis and Monti brothers.
The design historian Enrico Morteo and the architecture professor at the Polytechnic of Milan Orsina Simona Pierini, propose in this book a journey into Milanese houses, one of the birthplaces of Italian design.
A refined volume which, for the first time, documents the evolution of domestic interiors from the 1930s, and the incursion of modernity, at the end of the 1970s, the season of post-modernity.
The result of a great research work which saw the authors sift through period magazines, archives of architects and photographers and exhibition projects of the Triennale, this volume (in Italian and English) clearly shows how the path of architecture in Milan of interiors has intertwined with the accelerations of the artistic avant-gardes and the affirmation of a new role for everyday objects.
Who will like it: who, to have a new look at the city, wants to start from the essence of the "Milan canon". That particular intimate and discreet, but difficult to define, style in which elegance and practicality mix.
“Extraordinary Morocco” by Elena Masera (Tonocontinuo editions, 25 euros).
Born in Milan, after 14 years of working in the media, Elena Masera decides to follow her passion for photography and, after some intermediate stages, she arrives in Morocco. She where she settles. Right in the heart of the Medina of Marrakech, where she lives today, Elena Masera thus discovers a light, a landscape and many poetic stories to tell.
Precisely those that make up the photographic book "Extraordinary Morocco" where, behind each photo, the poetry of the landscapes, the colors of the architecture and the many faces of everyday life are reflected. As an observer, Elena Masera manages to describe traditions superimposed on Western habits, faces, views, skies and architecture. She focusing on some "places of the soul".
Who will like it: nomadic and curious souls who, above all, try to capture the soul of a place. The spiritual essence that is always contained in that structure made up of streets, houses, shops and, of course, people, which we call a city.
Philosophy of landscape by Paolo d'Angelo (Quodlibet, 18 euros)
The book by Paolo d'Angelo, professor of Aesthetics at the Roma Tre University, is in its third edition (and third update), which takes the title of a famous essay by Georg Simmel, published exactly a century ago. An essay that reaffirms how the discourse on landscape is not just architecture or ecology, but rather always arises from a philosophical reflection. And aesthetics.
A book to be read slowly, to meditate on the thinking that, during the twentieth century, passed through designers and urban planners and which, today, poses new challenges: the relationship between landscape and art, between cinema and environmental art. What idea of landscape is behind the concrete interventions that are then carried out? This book tries to give an answer.
Who will like it: to those who wonder about environmental protection and redevelopment policies in the belief that the way we imagine the landscape is decisive for our existence.
Alberto Meda. Tension and lightness by Marco Sanmicheli (AA.VV. ed. Electa, 40 euros)
Accompanying the exhibition of the same name inaugurated last month at the Triennale di Milano (and scheduled until 7 January 2024) is this book edited by Marco Sanmicheli and with texts by Testi by Riccardo Blumer, Rolf Fehlbaum, Tullia Iori, Ezio Manzini and Marilia Pederbelli.
A volume of essays, interviews, photographs, images of prototypes, drawings and unpublished materials that span over 40 years of activity by AlbertoMeda, an engineer and designer born in Como and always active in Milan. Technical director of Kartell since 1973, collaborator of Brevetti Gaggia and Alfa Romeo Auto and, today, of companies such as Alessi, Cinelli, Colombodesign, Mandarina Duck, Ideal Standard, Luceplan, Vitra, Olivetti, Zucchetti, Arte Sella and many other companies.
A book that traverses his working method whose poetics develop around a constant search for visual and constructive lightness and the evolved and extended concept of comfort.
Who will like it: who wants to know in depth the modus operandi of one of the still active designers who have made the history of many unforgettable objects.
Small illustrated manual for font seekers (AA.VV., Officina il Saggiatore, 15 euros)
Roman or Garamond? Times New Roman or Calibri? Behind the choice of a typeface there is, literally, a world of characters and stories that are worth knowing. We have to wait until November 21 to immerse ourselves in this small and precious essay which tells how they were created and what the cultural history of the different fonts is typographic.
A story that is intertwined with brands, logos, iconic advertisements and the most common uses. Accompanied by illustrations by Giacomo Agnello Modica, it is a book full of curiosities and information.
Who will like it: Designers, graphic designers and advertisers. But also to communication scholars and to all those who, at least once in their life, have found themselves having to choose "a character".
Cover photo: an image of the new 'Giunti Odeon' in Florence: inaugurated on 4 November, it brings books to the cinema.