The W* Library: flick through April’s new titles

Book of Drawing: Ronan & Erwan Bouroullec
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Drawing: Ronan & Erwan Bouroullec
By Cornel Windlin

Wallpaper* has been big on the Bouroullecs since the designer duo’s earliest days in the industry. Their latest publication, Drawing, is an insight into the design process, a collection of hundreds of drawings, from conceptual scribbles through to more realised final sketches. Taken from notebooks and sketchpads over the past seven years, it has been lovingly compiled into nearly 900 pages by the designer Cornel Windlin and is available in English for the first time.

Published by JRP Ringier (opens in new tab), €25

Writer: Jonathan Bell

Sketches and drawings from the book

A spread from the book, which catalogues a large volume of sketches and drawings by the duo between 2005 and 2012

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View of 'Vegetal' chair

Those familiar with the Bouroullec's designs might recognise early studies that formed the basis for iconic products - this particular sketch seems to allude to their 'Vegetal' chair

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View of cahiers and feuilles by the brother

The drawings are taken from a meticulously maintained collection of cahiers and feuilles by the brothers, and present their product ideas in their purest form

(Image credit: TBC)

The Architect's Home
By Gennaro Postiglione

Architects' own houses have a perennial fascination, not least because of their reputation as test benches for all manners of domestic design experiments. An architects' home is frequently an ongoing project, constantly refined and altered throughout its life, with its owner often willing to put up with the occasional inconvenience for the sake of uncluttered lines. That said, this new book is mostly concerned with European architects and their search for a singular domestic aesthetic, rather than attempts to push the boundaries (the late Gunther Domenig’s Stonehouse is a notable exception). Covering architects from the late C19th onwards, the book features archive imagery, plans and more.

Published by Taschen (opens in new tab), £27.99

Writer: Jonathan Bell

Book of The Architect's Home

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From the book: Johannes Hendrik van den Broek's home

From the book: Johannes Hendrik van den Broek's home, new construction, Kralinseweg, Rotterdam (NL), 1948-52. © Architectenbureau Van den Broek en Bakema Archive

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View of Francisco de Asís Cabrero Torres-Quevedo's home

Francisco de Asís Cabrero Torres-Quevedo's home, new construction, still inhabited by the architect, Avenida de Miraflores 14, Puerta de Hierro, Madrid (E), 1961-62. © Francisco de Asís Cabrero Torres-Quevedo, Madrid

(Image credit: TBC)

View of Aurelio Galfetti's home

Aurelio Galfetti's home, new construction, still inhabited by the architect, via D'Alberti, Bellinzona (CH), 1986. © Archivio del Moderno - Accademia di architettura, Mendrisio

(Image credit: TBC)

Various Small Books
Edited by Jeff Brouws, Wendy Burton and Hermann Zschiegner

The artist Ed Ruscha is a master at translating the ephemeral into permanence. Throughout the 1960s and 70s, the artist created a number of 'small books' that fused photography with curatorial intrigue, chronicling the overlooked no-spaces and non-architecture of auto-centric middle America. Various Small Books is a continuation of this project; the twist is that it is a book about books, bringing together 91 projects influenced by Ruscha's original work. Some of the featured work is a straightforward homage, some is more inventive in its updating of the Ruschian ideal - using Google imagery, for example. For lovers of artistic minutae.

Published by MIT Press (opens in new tab), £27.95

Writer: Jonathan Bell

Book of Various Small Books

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From the book: 'Twentysix Abandoned Jackrabbit Homesteads

From the book: 'Twentysix Abandoned Jackrabbit Homesteads', by Kim Stringfellow, 2010

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View of 'Various Unbaked Cookies and Milk

'Various Unbaked Cookies and Milk', by Marcella Hackbarkdt, 2010

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View of Every coffee I drank in January 2010

Herman Zschiegner's tome 'Every coffee I drank in January 2010' is inspired by Ed Ruscha's 'Stains'

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Atelier Bow-Wow: A Primer
Edited by Laurent Stalder, Cornelia Escher, Megumi Komura and Meruro Washida

The work of Tokyo-based architects Atelier Bow-Wow has travelled well. The internet-driven explosion of interest in the wilder excesses of Japanese domestic design has given ABW wide recognition outside their native country. A Primer is a richly illustrated monograph, chronicling everything from the architects' first house in Tokyo in 1998 to more familiar recent works. Drawings and diagrams form an essential part of the work process, and each project is photographed and given a concise and illuminating description through the use of sketches. Atelier Bow-Wow specialise in small scale interventions, and the book also features a portfolio of photographic prints by Lena Amuat, capturing the random mess and disorder of everyday life within architecture. This is a new breed of monograph, less concerned with projecting a heroic image of its subject and more focused on chronicling the evolution of space over time.

Published by Walther Koenig (opens in new tab), €68

Writer: Jonathan Bell

Book of Atelier Bow-Wow: A Primer

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From the book: Kawanishi Camping Cottage

From the book: Kawanishi Camping Cottage, 1999

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View of Ani House

Ani House, Kanagawa, Japan, 1997

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View of architect's plan for Miyashita Park

A spread from the book of the architect's plan for Miyashita Park in Tokyo, 2011

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Supermodel: Making of the World’s Tallest TV Tower
By Mark Hemel and Barbara Kuit

Supermodel is the breathless and human account of Mark Hemel and Barbara Kuit’s jackpot, winning the international competition to design Guangzhou TV Tower. The title refers to the nickname locals gave to the slender curving tower, but the tale of their success is less polished. Here the architects juggle their embryonic family and fledgling studio, Information Based Architecture, with the demands of a squalling 610-metre tower. The charm is in Mark and Barbara’s messy attempts to adapt and react to events, often beyond their control. Far from glamorous, this is architecture with a lot of sleepless nights thrown in. A lot like a new baby, in fact.

Writer: Gareth George

Book of Supermodel: Making of the World’s Tallest TV Tower

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From the book: The tower from the south

From the book: The tower from the south, January 2011

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View of Abseiling workers spray-paint all the nooks and crannies

From left: Abseiling workers spray-paint all the nooks and crannies, September 2009; and before painting, all dust, rust and spilled concrete had to be removed, September 2009

(Image credit: TBC)

Phaidon Focus series
By various authors

Phaidon are adept at packaging up key artists and movements in contemporary art, ensuring each generation has a familiar and forward-thinking way of immersing itself in visual culture. The newest tranche of introductory monographs is Phaidon Focus. With nearly 30 titles in the works, the Focus series is an extended primer, a handsome hardback designed to provide an in-depth overview of an artist's life, plus a more concentrated focus on key works from the artist's career to date. Featured artists include Bacon, Kiefer, Hockney, Rauschenberg, and many more.  

Published by Phaidon (opens in new tab), £14.95 each

Writer: Jonathan Bell

Book of Phaidon Focus series

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View of incarnations of 'Elvis I and II'

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View of 'Easter Lake and 'Daffodil

A spread from the Robert Rauschenberg volume featuring, from left: 'Easter Lake (Galvanic Suite)', 1988; and 'Daffodil (Shiner)', 1986

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View of The Women of Antiquity

A spread from the Anselm Kiefer edition depicting 'The Women of Antiquity (Die Frauen der Antike)', 2010

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View of 'Cubi' sculpture series

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Penguin Lines series

Paperback publishing loves a gimmick, especially where good design is involved. Penguin's new 'Lines' series is a clever conceit that seems tailor-made for the venerable originator of the paperback. Launched to coincide with London Underground's 150th year, Lines is a collection of 12 books, each linked with a specific tube line and each given a designer gloss in the vein of Penguin's ongoing cover art revival. Contributors range widely in tone and style, from observations, essays, drawings and memoirs, including Philippe Parreno's abstract, illustrative 'Drift' (the Hammersmith & City Line), Fantastic Man's Gert Jonkers and Jop van Bennekom's compact style manual with a focus on shirt buttons on the East London Line to Camila Batmanghelidjh's frankly harrowing tales of London's forgotten children (Victoria Line).

Published by Penguin (opens in new tab); £5 each or available in a boxset of 12

Writer: Jonathan Bell

Book of Penguin Lines series

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From the book: White cotton shirt

From the book: White cotton shirt,  Fantastic Man No. 5, 2007

(Image credit: Maurice Scheltens and Liebeth Abbenes )

Portrait of Matthew Vant

Portrait of Matthew Vant, a songwriter and filmmaker living in Dalston, East London, by Benjamin Alexander Huseby

(Image credit: TBC)

Paris: The Great Saga
By Didier Busson

In this age of Google Earth, augmented reality and pocket mapping, cartographers have to pull off a pretty stunning trick to keep your interest. Paris: The Great Saga is part tech demonstrator, part atlas, part history book. Working in collaboration with 3D experts Dassault Systèmes, the book brings together an educational DVD, augmented reality, 3D glasses and online integration. It's worth it alone for the chance to experience the structural majesty of the great Hall of Machines, erected alongside the Eiffel Tower for the 1889 World’s Fair and subsequently demolished.

Published by Flammarion Éditions (opens in new tab) and Dassault Systèmes (opens in new tab), €35

Writer: Jonathan Bell

Book of Paris: The Great Saga

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View of Parisian monument

A still from the interactive 3D tours of various Parisian monuments, past and present, including the Lutetia arena (pictured)

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View of digital accompaniment to the book

The online virtual tours act as a digital accompaniment to the book

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View of Eiffel Tower

Detail of a rendering of the Eiffel Tower

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Melina Keays is the entertaining director of Wallpaper*. She has been part of the brand since the magazine’s launch in 1996, and is responsible for entertaining content across the print and digital platforms, and for Wallpaper’s creative agency Bespoke. A native Londoner, Melina takes inspiration from the whole spectrum of art and design – including film, literature, and fashion. Her work for the brand involves curating content, writing, and creative direction – conceiving luxury interior landscapes with a focus on food, drinks, and entertaining in all its forms