From Agit-prop to Free Space: The Architecture of Cedric Price

From Agit-prop to Free Space: The Architecture of Cedric Price

Paperback

By (author) Stanley Mathews

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  • Publisher: Black Dog Publishing Ltd
  • Format: Paperback | 288 pages
  • Dimensions: 180mm x 248mm x 24mm | 1,139g
  • Publication date: 30 May 2007
  • Publication City/Country: London
  • ISBN 10: 1904772528
  • ISBN 13: 9781904772521
  • Edition: 1
  • Illustrations note: 304 b&w & colour illustrations
  • Sales rank: 287,713

Product description

Cedric Price was one of the most visionary architects of the late twentieth century, taking a playful, interactive approach to his projects that was wholly lateral and completely unconventional. He dealt with variable structures; creating works involving mobile classrooms running along rail tracks and prefab studios connected by cranes. Beginning with his work on the Fun Palace, a collaborative exercise with major avant-garde theatre practitioner Joan Littlewood, the book takes account of Price's relationships and biography over the course of his career, and the influence of the particular context and culture of post-war Britain upon his thinking - not only about architecture, but broadly about education, politics, business and technology. His permanent and temporary structures, from the Fun Palace, through to the Potteries Thinkbelt, the Magnets, and his seminal work on cybernetics, have influenced such architects and artists as Richard Rogers, Rem Koolhaas, Ron Arad, Bernard Tschumi, and Rachel Whiteread. "From Agit-Prop to Free Space" is the first and only authoritative text on Cedric Price's complete body of work, providing a broad overview, as well as detailed assessment of his buildings and thought along with an assessment of his continuing influence, where previous titles on Price have had a far narrower focus or have now been superseded in terms of accounting for his import in contemporary work. It is the result of extensive and exhaustive research based on vast quantities of unpublished archive material, including letters, memos, notes, drawings and recordings, by academic and writer Stanley Mathews. With beautiful illustrations and accessible text, a portrait is painted of a true radical, who overturned conventional ideas of what architecture means, and had a massive impact on the landscape of architecture in Britain. The broad spectrum of disciplines that Price engages with means that this timely publication will appeal not only to architects but to those involved in art, politics, science and culture.

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Author information

Professor Stanley Mathews of Hobart and William Smith Colleges in New York State has developed his manuscript through archival research and personal communications with Cedric Price, and with Joan Littlewood, Peter Cook of Archigram, Dick Hebdige, Frank Newby, and a host of other prominent figures in the world of architecture and culture. As such, this book provides a unique insight into the cultural milieu within which Price worked, and which continues to have resonance today.

Flap copy

Cedric Price was one of the most visionary architects of the late twentieth century, taking a playful, interactive approach to his projects that was wholly lateral and completely unconventional. From Agit-Prop to Free Space is the first and only authoritative text on the early work of this visionary architect and thinker.