The Western Town
A Theory of Aggregation
Published by Hatje Cantz.
Edited by Alex Lehnerer. Foreword by Robert E. Somol. Text by Jayne Kelley, Alex Lehnerer, Jared Macken, Lorenzo Stieger.
The Western town of roughly 1860–90 exists in an ephemeral moment in American history. Always being realized but never really there, these towns vanished entirely from the prairie by the end of the nineteenth century. Yet even today everyone has visited these towns, since they survive in their abstract and distilled form through the plot-generating sets of Western movies. The Western Town: A Theory of Aggregation retells the story of 22 Western towns architecturally, from the scale of the lace curtain or sun-bleached wood coffin to the vast, empty desert. The book includes detailed maps of towns from the following films, among others: A Fistful of Dollars (1964), Buchanan Rides Alone (1958), For a Few Dollars More (1965), Fort Apache (1948), Hang ‘Em High (1968), High Noon (1952), High Plains Drifter (1973), Major Dundee (1965), McCabe and Mrs. Miller (1971), Ride the High Country (1962), Rio Bravo (1959), Rio Grande (1950), Stagecoach (1939), The Alamo (1960) and The Wild Bunch (1969).