The Power of Architecture: 25 Modern Buildings from Around the World

The Power of Architecture: 25 Modern Buildings from Around the World
Age Range
Release Date
September 20, 2022
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This beautifully illustrated book investigates how contemporary architects from a variety of cultures are addressing issues of climate change, income inequality, and limited resources by designing buildings that are as innovative as they are beautiful. Each building is presented in a double-page spread featuring Pamela Baron’s exquisitely detailed illustrations that highlight the design, natural surroundings, and the people who live, work, or play there.

Editor review

1 review
If You Build It, They Will Come
Overall rating
Writing Style
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable)
Learning Value
Architecture is fascinating, and it seems odd to me that more people don't pay attention to the buildings that fill our world. Even more alarming is the fact that people don't appreciate certain styles of the past and are quick to tear down or deface some types that are not terribly old but are considered outmoded. One of my favorite architectural elementals in Curtainwall, so it made me happy that the oldest building covered in the book was Walter Gropius Fagus Factory from 1911 that showcased this style. Can we quit tearing down or refacing similar schools and post offices now?

The 25 buildings that are described are not necessary the most famous or impressive buildings in the world, but a sample of architecture across the world over a period of time that makes a statement about the time during which it was built. There are utilitarian buildings, like the Battersea Power Station, and more decorative ones like Wright's Fallingwater. Each two page spread features a drawing of the building, a brief discussion of its history, and insight as to why it is architecturally significant. A timeline at the end of the book gives more facts about the buildings, such as location, materials, and special features, and also offers biographies of the architects. There is no index or bibliography.
Good Points
The illustrations are well done and almost worthy of being framed, but I still wanted to see photographs of most of these. There are notes for web sites on some pages, directing readers to more images online, which is helpful.

This is a great book for budding architects or people, like me, who are just curious about the buildings around us. There are a few books about buildings for young people, such as The School of Life's What Adults Don’t Know About Architecture, Sayre's Citryscape, and National Geographic's Famous Fails. It's also hard to go wrong with paperback editions Macauley's classic City, Unbuilding, and other fantastic books with detailed drawings and descriptions.
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