"Contemporary World Interiors" takes the reader on a global tour of the best and most provocative interior design and architecture projects of the past 25 years, presenting the characteristic traits, influences, and enduring ideas of the contemporary interior. Rather than simply charting passing trends, author Susan Yelavich, a veteran New York-based curator and critic, describes some 450 specific projects by famous designers and promising newcomers alike, in countries as far-ranging as Russia, Israel, Chile, South Korea, and South Africa, as well as more familiar locales in Europe, Japan, and North America. A carefully edited selection of more than 1000 color photographs and plans illustrates the book, all reproduced at a generous format. The book is organized in 11 chapters by building type, with an introduction that presents an overview of the changes and ideas affecting interior architecture and design over the past three decades. As Yelavich points out, gone are the days when any one aesthetic language dominated, as the International Style did in the years after World War II. The new interior climate is inclusive, and once-alien styles flourish side by side.
All kinds of interiors - from the once-minimal loft to the once-antiseptic hospital room - show evidence of a renewed interest in ornament, in craft and materiality, and in spatial complexities, often tempered by modernist, postmodernist, or deconstructivist influences. Each chapter opens with a brief introduction of dominant historical precedents and themes, then moves to detailed descriptions of 20 to 50 individual projects, noting the designer, project name, location, year of completion, and significant aspects of the interior, including its architecture, furnishings, color palette, and materials, as well as the designer's or client's aims. The book begins with chapters on residential interiors - houses, lofts, and apartments - following Yelavich's argument that domestic space has become the catalyst for entirely new ways of thinking about other kinds of interiors, from the office worker's cubicle to the nurse's station to the librarian's reading room. The book moves on to offices, civic spaces, religious spaces, cultural spaces, retail, restaurants, hotels, and therapeutic spaces.
Within the chapters, readers will find familiar names and places, such as the Tate Modern in London by Herzog and de Meuron; Nobu restaurant in New York, by David Rockwell; and the thermal baths in Vals, by Peter Zumthor; as well as new discoveries, such as the Psychiatrist Hospital in Zeeland, the Netherlands, by the Dutch firm Mecanoo; the Korean Presbyterian Church in New York, by Greg Lynn; and the Joyce Department Store in Taipei, by the New York firm Tsao and McKown.
Introduction * Houses * Apartments * Lofts * Offices * Civic Spaces * Religious Spaces * Cultural Spaces * Retail * Restaurants * Hotels * Therapeutic Spaces * Notes * Selected Bibliography * Index
Susan Yelavich is a freelance writer and curator, and an assistant professor at Parsons the New School for Design in New York. She was Assistant Director for Public Programs at the Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum from 1994 to 2002, where she co-curated the museum's acclaimed 2003 National Design Triennial.