Lives and times: New art and architecture books

Reminiscing on what has transpired in or before our lives, this month’s picks of the new art, architecture and design books look at the legacy of some of the spaces, places and faces we have behind us. Some deal with temporary works of urban art in the capital; others, the creation of new history in the light of the old. Have a browse and enjoy.

Melancholy Wedgwood / Moon, Iris
“Melancholy Wedgwood is an experimental biography that traces multiple strands in the ceramic entrepreneur’s life to propose an alternative look at eighteenth-century England’s tenuous relationship to our own lives and times.” (Catalogue)

Here today, gone tomorrow : Wellington street art / Baird, Jaimie D.
“Four decades, 1200+ images. Art or vandalism, protest or social commentary – how you see street art depends on where you stand. Jamie Baird’s Here today gone tomorrow documents his 40-year fascination with these ephemera as “a testament to human imagination, innovation and cultural diversity. Whatever you make of it, this book’s riot of colour and off-beat street images cements Wellington’s reputation as “one of the coolest little capitals in the world.” (Catalogue)

The house of green : natural homes and biophilic architecture
“In the search for the sweet spot where nature and modern-day living meet, The House of Green delivers solutions for a perfect blend of both worlds. Longing for nature is no strange feeling for anyone. The House of Green is a collection of the most stunning architecture and interiors incorporating nature in their designs, that explores the benefits of this approach to homes, workplaces, and more. Whether you are a design lover looking to revamp your home or a designer searching for new professional solutions, we invite you to dive in and fully experience The House of Green.”  (Adapted from Catalogue)

Station : a journey through 20th and 21st century railway architecture and design / Beanland, Christopher
Station is a celebration of modern railway architecture, from a brutalist signalbox in Birmingham to the futuristic snake-like footbridge at Koge Nord station in Denmark, taking in romantic station hotels, bustling interchanges and the latest railway innovations along the way.” (Catalogue)

Te Pae : the place where we meet / Pearson, Lizzy
“Te Pae is the iconic convention centre of Christchurch, built after the devastating earthquake of 2011. This limited edition book on Te Pae celebrates the building, the land that precedes it, and its people. The book’s narrative has been designed as a rite of passage, marking the collective transition from grief and rubble to urban beauty. All of its components and design details are imbued with symbolism and meaning, interweaving this ritual into the materiality of the book. ” (Adapted from Catalogue)

A different light : first photographs of Aotearoa
“From horses laden with mammoth photographic plates in the 1870s to the arrival of the Kodak in the late 1880s, New Zealand’s first photographs reveal Kīngi and governors, geysers and slums, battles and parties.  A Different Light brings together the extraordinary and extensive photographic collections of three major research libraries – Tāmaki Paenga Hira Auckland War Memorial Museum, Alexander Turnbull Library and Hocken Collections Uare Taoka o Hākena – to coincide with a touring exhibition of some of the earliest known photographs of Aotearoa.” (Adapted from Catalogue)

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