Home Improvement & Design: Books: How-To & Home Improvements, Home Decorating & Design & More

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  • The Swedish Country House

    The Swedish Country House

    Sert Kapak
    Swedish country houses are one of Europe’s best-kept secrets. Little known outside Sweden and rarely published, they survive in surpris­ingly large numbers, often with their original furniture and decoration. Twenty of these remarkable and timeless houses are examined here in detail, ranging from royal palaces to farmhouses, all dating from the fifteenth century to the end of the nineteenth century. In spite of being far from the centers of power and artistic influence, these houses reflect the talents of important architects and designers who together forged a distinctive national style. Sweden has been fortunate in its history: while the Hundred Years War reduced much of Europe to ruins, Sweden grew rich, and during the subsequent centuries has enjoyed almost continuous peace. The story of Swedish country houses is thus a mirror of Swedish social history, its hierarchy of classes, its absorption of European styles and movements, and above all its enduring culture. The Swedish Country House is both an impor­tant contribution to design history and a highly seductive glimpse into a secret Nordic world. Art historian Susanna Scherman has included examples from every level, drawing special attention to the qualities that make them unique. She and noted photographer Åke E:son Lindman explored the houses together, and together they bring them to life for the reader.
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  • Dish: International Design for the Home

    Dish: International Design for the Home

    Sert Kapak
    The big design surveys of the past few years tend to have two things in common: a lot of creative design and very few women designers. Dish is here to set the record straight. This exciting collection features new work by over forty emerging and established female designers from over fifteen countries.The innovative, cutting-edge work in Dish provides a fresh take on current trends in product design for the home, including furniture, ceramics, glassware, lighting, and textiles. Works range from Monica Nicoletti's "Place Holders" moving boxes that serve as transitional furniture to Matali Crasset's "Phytolab" that combines plants and plastic in a bathroom project. They explore materials, from Sara Unruh's chemically treated silk fabric to Anette Hermann's rubber and metal chair, in which the user becomes part of the construction. Each designer is featured with examples of her work, biographical information, and a personal statement that encapsulates her approach. A foreword by Susan Yelavich and essays by experts in making, selling, and critiquing contemporary design offer insights into the conceptual, aesthetic, functional, and political nature of the work. All together, this book dishes out the hottest work around.
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