A study of the interior design styles original to Germany. The reader is taken on a tour of German interiors from the 16th to the early-20th centuries, through Rococco summer palaces, elegant middle-class Biedermeier villas and simple rural retreats to the functional forms of the Bauhaus.
Frances Lincoln Publishers Ltd
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UK Kirkus review
Over the last half of the 20th century, in Europe at least, fascination in interior design reached an unprecedented level, reviving cultures from Morocco to Sweden. Strange then, that despite the Bauhaus school spawning one of the most influential movements in design history, such scant attention has been paid to Germany. Here, at long last, is a book not only to redress the balance, but one that tackles the question of precisely what is meant by German style. The answer is far from glib. There is yet to exist a society in which fashion and taste are not victims of political turbulence and in Germany, a country for much of its history characterized by fragmentation, identifying a uniquely national decorative tradition is especially problematic. Every race of people, moreover, has its own little idiosyncracies, nowhere more so than the mundane. Accordingly, the essayist, Montaigne, claimed Germans went into a decline if obliged to sleep on a mattress. (feather beds did equally for an Italian apparently, and lack of curtains the French). Montaigne believed in anecdote - German pubs have no napkins, he complained. But from Goethe's cringe over carpets to Schiller's passion for pink, in her intensely readable quest for truly Teutonic, Sangl believes in anecdote too. Sangl's is a highly authoritative approach. Lavishly illustrated with outstanding photography, it would be a travesty to relegate this meticulous and valuable work to the coffee table. Rather it looks set to herald another revival: serious interest in German style. And about time too. (Kirkus UK)
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