I Am London
Welcome to a new appointment of our monthly column, the Archi-Design Book. A column that does not want to have particular claims, other than to spread some of the (many) books, which, for one reason or another, have most caught our attention. Books whose file rouge is marked by the magical world of Design and Architecture.
For those who missed the first date, and are curious to find out which was the first book chosen for this column, you can find the complete article at this link: https://maisonelleinteriors.com/entryways-of-milan-by-karl-kolbitz/
Today we have chosen a truly unique book. First of all because the publisher is Moleskine, and we surely know that everything that bears this name represents a little gem to be discovered. Secondly, because the author is Carlo Stanga. Who is it? A great architect, author, but above all a great illustrator. In “I Am London”, we are invited to visit London through the enchanting drawings of this excellent master. Sketches that are able to kidnap and transport us to a unique and rarefied atmosphere. Design that is able to capture and tell the true essence of this place, its most intimate and hidden identity. All through the expert hands of Carlo Stanga, who creates unique works of art.
As a result, we have a 112-page paper book and 3 books from the same series: Milan, London and New York. It’s a mix of using colors and matching together silhouettes. So let’s find out!
London tells London
The work is presented as a mix of drawings and written texts. London itself speaks and talks about itself, according to a perspective that is that of a capital, that above all wants to present itself to the world. How? Certainly by highlighting its features, its details and all those nuances, which make it unique and inimitable, obviousley. As a result it is the city that tells itself!
The drawings, on their side, present such a wealth of details and accents, that it seems almost impossible to have been drawn by hand. Each sketch seems to be a snapshot of reality. But in this case it is the author, that artistically conceives and reworks the snapshot, with the clear intention of transmitting the true essence of a place.
A unique and unrepeatable essence, which the visitor will never find anywhere else. Because, despite our modern times aim to create more and more flat and similar cities, cities has to remain unique places. Cities must be highly recognizable in their identity character.
Beauty, Architecture, History
Beauty, Architecture and History are the three key words that cross and define this work. Places that tell experiences, shapes that hide heterogeneous contents, all to be discovered.
Beauty. It emerges strongly through the traits, colors and techniques used by the illustrator. It comes out of the words, used to describe the events and the stories, that went through this city. A sense of awe and wonder, which we should never accept.
Architecture. Lines and shapes that define the aesthetics of a city. A metropolis in continuous evolution that brings together contrasting and heterogeneous elements. Elements that seem the result of the randomness of time and its evolution, but which together marvelously trace the life of this urban area.
History. A historic city, rich in its past, a past that wants to be told. A multicultural and multi-faceted background, able to keep up with the times, but at the same time always capable to look back to its roots.
Different Reading Levels
Carlo Stanga manages to give a hierarchical interpretation to his drawings and to direct the “reader” on his visual tour through the characteristic places of London.
In “I Am London” there is a wise and focused use of perspective, technique and textures. All these elements make his sketches a dynamic and never banal mix. The illustrator is able to create different reading levels and to transmit them fully to the observer.
The eye goes towards those details, which first must be noticed. Only later you will see the entire sketch, in contemplation of these wonderful works of art. A real tour, where the author’s trait is our guide.
Why you have to read it?
There are so many reasons to buy this book, really. It is a precious collection of works of art, above all. Having this book means having a precious treasure chest rich in works designed by Carlo Stanga. And this is more than enough reason!
Having this book means having a precious collection of drawings, that tell the face of one of the most historic European cities. A synoptic work that, page after page, is able to reveal the less obvious details of this city.
Having this work means discovering London under an exclusive architectural perspective, that of an expert’s eye. An expert who wants to tell everyone the magic of this unique city.
Looking forward to the next monthly column dedicated to books, I wish you a good reading of “I am London”! Ortenca