Book List of the Week

The Shared Space of Architecture and Art: David Adjaye’s Book List

By Steve Kroeter April 3, 2012

David Adjaye

Architect David Adjaye: Adjaye Associates (London)

Profile     Book List

Shortly after his largest high-profile project to date—the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture—broke ground several weeks ago on the Mall in Washington D.C., David Adjaye stopped to send along his book list to Designers & Books.

African Metropolitan Architecture, 2011 (Rizzoli International Publications)

The interests and qualities of engagement evident in the design of the seven-story museum (scheduled to open in 2014)—a three-tiered “corona” enveloped in an African-inspired bronze mesh, for which Adjaye is leading the team that includes Philip Freelon (also a Designers & Books contributor), Davis Brody Bond, and SmithGroup—show up in the books that have absorbed him. These range from, among other titles, Bruno Latour’s Making Things Public (“how you imagine or create the idea of publicness in our cities”) to Cheikh Anta Diop’s Precolonial Black Africa (“a true archaelogical and scientific unraveling”), to Robin Evans’s Translations from Drawing to Building and Other Essays (also on Mohsen Mostafavi’s book list), which appeals to “my interest in the wider, social, cultural, and political discourse.”

A House for an Art Collector, 2011 (Rizzoli International Publications)

The architect of the dynamic interiors of the Nobel Peace Center in Oslo and the Museum of Contemporary Art in Denver as well as striking private residences, in addition to many other notable built works in Europe, Africa and the Middle East, Adjaye is known for his collaboration with artists and figures in the art world. Both the idea of the shared space of architecture and art and that of public engagement have led him to the eight books he has written. He has said that he views making books as an important way to transmit his architectural ideas, along with building.

Authoring: Re-Placing Art and Architecture, forthcoming, May 2012, (Lars Müller Publishers)

His acclaimed African Metropolitan Architecture—a collection of the Tanzania-born architect’s photographs documenting the built environments of 52 African cities—and A House for an Art Collector—on the adventurous New York townhouse he designed to showcase a prominent private art collection—were published in 2011 (both by Rizzoli International Publications). His most recent book, Authoring: Re-Placing Art and Architecture (Lars Müller Publishers), which follows three studios he co-taught with Marc McQuade at Princeton University’s School of Architecture in 2008–2010 focusing on collaboration with three contemporary artists in ways intended to challenge traditional assumptions about the relationship between art and architecture, will be released in May 2012.


View David Adjaye’s Profile     View David Adjaye’s Book List

comments powered by Disqus