ARCHITECITURE SURVEYS, COMPETITIONS, AND PERIODICALS

PUBLISHER
METROPOLIS BOOKS

BOOK FORMAT
Hardcover, 7.75 x 9.75 in. / 256 pgs / 320 color / 80 bw.

PUBLISHING STATUS
PUB DATE
Active

DISTRIBUTION
D.A.P. EXCLUSIVE
CATALOG: FALL 2014 p. 18   

PRODUCT DETAILS
ISBN 9781938922589 TRADE
LIST PRICE: $35.00 CDN $40.00

AVAILABILITY
In stock

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METROPOLIS BOOKS

Superlight

Rethinking How Our Homes Impact the Earth

Published by Metropolis Books
Text by Phyllis Richardson.

Featured image is reproduced from <I>Superlight</I>.One of the most powerful design philosophies of recent years has been architect Glenn Murcutt's dictum that buildings should "touch the earth lightly." Ever since the Industrial Revolution, architects have sought to liberate our houses from their solid foundations, but now climate change, new materials and restricted land use have given fresh impetus to finding lightweight solutions for our dwellings. The projects here combine two strands of thinking: that buildings can weigh less and have minimal impact on their environments, and that this lightness--visual, material, ecological--can create beautiful, ethereal houses that offer new, natural modes of habitation and greater communion with our surroundings. Each of the 40 houses selected by Phyllis Richardson--author of the widely successful XS series and Nano House--is presented through photographs, plans and lucid explanations. Residences that float on air or water, ingenious constructions using local materials, innovative structures, inflatable spaces, high-tech hyper-intelligent houses--"superlight" takes many forms. From the desert landscape of Arizona to the urban jungle of Tokyo, from rural China to mountainous Chile, this book brings new solutions for architects and designers everywhere.

Featured image is reproduced from Superlight.

PRAISE AND REVIEWS

Architectural Digest

Kristen Flanagan

In a new book, Superlight: Rethinking How Our Homes Impact the Earth (Metropolis Books), Phyllis Richardson tours 40 houses that were designed with lightness in mind. The result is a compendium of beautiful, innovative structures, including a floating egg-shaped residence and a number of tree houses built on stilts.

Interior Design

Stanley Abercrombie

This book's 41 examples, are all well presented, are organized into five somewhat overlapping categories. They begin with 'Floating,' as in 'over water, on stilts, mobile.' Consider a house built by H&P Architects in Hanoi, Vietnam, with the goal of withstanding 5 feet in flooding-the bamboo latticework walls also support blooming plants.

The compendium closes with 'Extreme,' featuring a project by Interior Design Hall of Fame member Shigeru Ban, also this year's Prizker winner. Like some of this larger works, this lodge on a Japansese island in the East China Sea was constructed from polyurethane-coated cardboard tubes. It therefore resembles a log cabin in every aspect...but weight.

The New York Times, Home Section

Alexandra Lange

In 'Superlight: Rethinking How Our Homes Impact the Earth' (Metropolis Books $35), Phyllis Richardson offers a global, contemporary perspective, high-lightening projects from Chile to Vietnam. She reconsiders what makes a perfect 'light,' expanding the definition from weight to impact on the site, energy consumption (or generation) and ability to cope with climate change.

Another Magazine

Abby Schlageter

Unique translucent corrugated plastic covers intertwined by exposed threaded bindings glistening with glue provide the housing for architect and design writer, Phyliss Richardson’s latest book, Superlight: Lightness in Contemporary Houses. The unusually light construction lures you in to uncover page after page of homely architecture porn – over 40 dwellings that are thoughtfully crafted and have minimal impact on the earth.

Bookforum

Christopher Lyon

The term light in architecture has meant different things to successive generations. For pioneering modernists, Glasarchitektur stood for a transparent, rationalist approach that would further hygienic and economic aims. In architecture of the past several decades, the use of exotic perforated, semitransparent, and multilayered materials shifted attention to the appearance of “lightness,” as in the projects, many by heavyweight architects, in Terence Riley’s 1995 Museum of Modern Art (New York) exhibition “Light Construction.” Superlight: Rethinking How Our Homes Impact the Earth shifts the focus to physical lightness, environmental impact, and affordability. Evenly distributed across the globe, and accompanied by careful descriptions of site, concept, and physical aspect by author Phyllis Richardson, the up-to-date selection of forty-one projects, mostly residences, is divided into categories: “Floating,” “Low Energy,” “Urban Light,” “Escape,” and “Extreme.” A dream-and-drool book for the environmentally minded, it offers intriguing housing solutions for developing countries–such as a clever, airy, elevated metal grid with ground-floor patio, created in 2013 in Thuân An, Vietnam.

Fabric

Truly special and unique… Grand designs indeed.

Elle Decoration

Stunning photography, illuminating floor plans and expert explanations.

Homes & Gardens

The innovative lightweight plastic cover of this book hints at the pioneering content within… Plans bring depth to each scheme.

Superlight

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FROM THE ARTBOOK BLOG

CORY REYNOLDS | DATE 10/1/2014

'Superlight: Rethinking How Our Homes Impact the Earth' Featured in the New York Times

'Superlight: Rethinking How Our Homes Impact the Earth' Featured in the New York TimesSuperlight author Phyllis Richardson is interviewed from her home in London, "where she lives in a Victorian house — with a polycarbonate and aluminum addition." To read the complete interview, continue to The New York Times. To read Richardson's Introduction to Superlight and for a selection of images, read below.
continue to blog


FROM THE ARTBOOK BLOG

CORY REYNOLDS | DATE 9/6/2014

Superlight: Rethinking How Our Homes Impact the Earth

Superlight: Rethinking How Our Homes Impact the EarthCrosson Clarke Carnachan Architects' "Hut on Sleds" in Whangapoua, New Zealand, is reproduced from Superlight: Rethinking How Our Homes Impact the Earth, Phyllis Richardson's fascinating new study of 40 beautiful, ethereal homes that offer lightweight, low-impact solutions for living. "The approach was very much about ingenuity. With an internal area of 431 square feet, space needed to be used well and sometimes for multiple purposes. This being a holiday home, there was also the issue of being able to secure the house during periods of absence, hence the giant shutter on the front northeast façade. And because of its location in a coastal erosion zone, it was a good idea to make the whole thing portable. But rather than create a sort of rusticated (or glorified) house on wheels like a trailer home, the architects and the clients stuck to the beach-shed typology and added thick wood runners underneath. These allow the house to be repositioned using a winch or tractor, an event that is scheduled to happen in the near future, so the sled’s aspect is no mere gimmick." continue to blog


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