Architecture on the carpet : the curious tale of construction toys and the genesis of modern buildings / Brenda and Robert Vale.

Vale, Brenda author.
New York, New York : Thames & Hudson, 2013.
208 pages : illustrations (chiefly color) ; 24 cm
Architecture, Modern -- 20th century -- Social aspects.
Toys -- Social aspects.
This book offers a view of architecture through the prism of construction toys. Ranging over the last century to the present, Brenda and Robert Vale draw parallels between the model-building sets of the modern period and architectural movements, social history, and national identities and myths. Some children's construction toys such as Lincoln Logs and Tudor Minibrix have looked to the past. Others have looked to the future: as early as the 1920s, the American metal toy Bilt-E-Z could be used to construct a stepped-back skyscraper like the Empire State Building. The Vales investigate not only how models sets have reflected different building styles but also whether the toys themselves influenced the careers of the children who grew up playing with them. They explore connections between model-railway buildings and modernism; model sets such as Castos and reinforced concrete housing; and even between the creative but slightly surreal Playplax and postmodern deconstructivist architecture.
Toys are Us
Modernism on the line
Richter's blocks and the castles on the Rhine
Meccano and making visible how things work
Lott's bricks and the Arts and Crafts movement
Wenebrik and the (un-modern) steel house
Lincoln Logs and the log cabin
Mobaco and De Stijl
Bayko and suburbia
Minibrix and unassuming architecture
Juneero and the architecture of make-do-and-mend
Castos and concrete on the carpet
Bilt-E-Z, Girder and Panel, Arkitex and the brave new world
Playplax and deconstruction
Lego and the green city
Learning architecture on the carpet.
Includes index.
Local notes:
Athenaeum copy: Albert M. Greenfield Memorial Fund.
Vale, Robert (Robert James Dennis), author.
9780500342855 (hbk.)
0500342857 (hbk.)
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