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Elements of Architecture

A follow-up to Rem Koolhaas’s iconic S, M, L, XL, this encyclopedic tome illustrates the research project lying behind the 14th International Architecture Biennale. The focus of this book is the evolution of the elements used by architects of every age throughout the history of architecture. Doors, windows, ceilings, floors, stairs,balconies, and other basic elements of architecture—often overlooked but universally familiar—are studied,analyzed, and cataloged by means of an endless variety of visual references, from ancient times to modern developments. By looking at the evolution of architectural elements that are common to all cultures, this exploration avoids the classical Eurocentrism that often still characterizes architectural discourse.

National identity has seemingly been sacrificed to modernity. Nevertheless, unique national features and mentalities continue to exist and flourish just as international collaboration and exchange intensifies.

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