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The Book of Trees
Lectures by author Manuel Lima

April 24 at 7pm
Strand Books, New York
Free with purchase of the book or Strand giftcard

May 21 at noon
92nd Street Y, New York
Tickets: $21, available here

The Book of Trees: Visualizing Branches of Knowledge is available now from Princeton Architectural Press!

Released just in time for National Library Week, our new book The Public Library presents an inspiring selection of libraries both monumental and modest — an impassioned tribute to a vibrant but threatened American institution. 
Above: Interior dome, Central Library, Milwaukee, Wisconsin, 2012, photograph by Robert Dawson.

Released just in time for National Library Week, our new book The Public Library presents an inspiring selection of libraries both monumental and modest — an impassioned tribute to a vibrant but threatened American institution. 

Above: Interior dome, Central Library, Milwaukee, Wisconsin, 2012, photograph by Robert Dawson.

The love letters continue! Stephen Powers is painting his love letter to Tokyo. Photos courtesy of Stephen Powers, Marc Jacobs, and lalala.

Stephen Powers’ book, A Love Letter to the Cityand his notecard set, 
I Paid the Light Bill Just to See Your Faceare available now.

Need gift ideas for Easter?

PAPress has you covered with fun and useful stationery items: 
Bird Watching Journal
Nested Notes Stickies
Nests & Eggs Notecards

Robert Dawson (The Public Library) receives Guggenheim Award

The response to our new book The Public Library has been nothing short of ecstatic. We couldn’t be more proud of the book and its author Robert Dawson, who we are thrilled to report, was just awarded a John Simon Guggenheim Fellowship. Dawson was also just interviewed by Scott Simon on NPR Weekend Edition and the book is popping up everywhere.

TONIGHT: Conversations on the Hudson at Best Made Co.

Please join Conversations on the Hudson author Nick Hand at Best Made HQ where he’ll speak about his five-hundred-mile journey through the hills, mountains, and countryside of the Hudson Valley. Best Made founder Peter Buchanan-Smith is featured in the book.

Tuesday, April 15, 7pm

Best Made Company
36 White Street, New York, NY

Type on Screen:
A Critical Guide for Designers, Writers, Developers, and Students

Edited by Ellen Lupton
Available May 27

Reserve a copy from PAPress now!
Shop locally
Pre-order from Amazon

HAPPY BIRTHDAY ANNE LAMOTT!
Anne Lamott is an acclaimed novelist and non-fiction writer, as well as a passionate political activist, public speaker, and writing teacher. But, it’s her tireless support of public libraries that we would like to spotlight and celebrate today. In that spirit, we are proud to present Anne’s moving contribution to our just released book The Public Library: A Photographic Essay.
Steinbeck Country
In Salinas, word went out. This is how many tribal stories begin: word goes out to the people of a community that there is a great danger or that a wrong is being committed. This is how I first found out that the governor planned to close the public libraries in Salinas, making it the largest city in the United States to lose its libraries because of budget cuts.
 Without getting into any mudslinging about whether or not our leaders are clueless, bullying, nonreading numbskulls,let me just say that when word went out that the three libraries—the John Steinbeck, the Cesar Chavez, and El Gabilan—were scheduled for closing, a whole lot of people rose up as one to say, This does not work for us. Salinas is one of the poorest communities in the state of California, in one of the richest counties in the country. The city and the surrounding area serve as the setting for so many of Steinbeck’s great novels. Think farmworkers, fields of artichokes and garlic, faded stucco houses stained with dirt, tracts of ticky-tacky housing, James Dean’s face in East of Eden, strawberry fields, and old gas stations.
 Now think about closing the libraries there, closing the buildings that hold the town’s books, all those stories about people and wisdom and justice and life and silliness and laborers bending low to pick the strawberries. You’d have to be crazy to bring such obvious karmic repercussions down on yourself. So in early April, a group of writers and actors fought back, showing up in Salinas for a twenty-four-hour “emergency read-in.”
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My sad sixties heart soared like an eagle at contemplating the very name: emergency read-in. George W. Bush and John Ashcroft had tried for years to create a country the East German state could only dream about, empowering the government to keep track of the books we checked out or bought, all in the name of national security. But the president and the attorney general hadn’t counted on how passionately writers and readers feel about the world, or at any rate, the worlds contained inside the silent spines of books.
 We came together because we started out as children who were saved by stories, stories read to us at night when we were little, stories we read by ourselves, in which we could get lost and thereby found. Some of us had grown up to become people with loud voices, which the farmworkers and their children needed. And we were mad. Show a bunch of writers a free public library is a revolutionary notion, and when people don’t have free access to books, then communities are like radios without batteries. You cut people off from essential sources of information—mythical, practical, linguistic, political—and you break them. You render them helpless in the face of political oppression. We were not going to let this happen.
 Writers and actors came from San Francisco and San Jose, from all around. Maxine Hong Kingston came from Oakland. Hector Elizondo drove up from Los Angeles, as did Mike Farrell. The poet José Montoya drove from Sacramento, four hours away. Alisa Valdes-Rodriguez flew all morning to be there. I drove down from the Bay Area with the Buddhist writer and teacher Jack Kornfield.
When we arrived, the lawn outside the Chavez library held only about 150 people—not the throngs we had hoped for—but the community was especially welcoming and grateful, and the women of CODEPINK, who helped organize the event, kept everyone’s spirits up. It’s hard to be depressed when activists in pink feather boas are kissing you. Many people had pitched tents on one side of the library, where they could rest through the night while the readings were proceeding onstage. 
 Can you imagine the kind of person who is willing to stay up all night in the cold to keep a few condemned libraries open? Well, not me, baby.
 I was going home to my own bed that night. But then I saw some of my parents’ old friends who were planning to stay, people who have been protesting and rallying in civil rights and peace marches since I was a girl, people who had driven from San Francisco because they’ve always know that the only thing that keeps a democracy functioning is the constant education of its citizens. If you don’t have a place where the poor, the marginalized, and the young can find out who they are, then you have no hope of maintaining a free and civilized society.
 We were there to celebrate some of the rare intelligence capabilities that our country can actually be proud of—those of librarians. I see them as healers and magicians. Librarians can tease out of inarticulate individuals enough information about what they are after to lead them on the path of connection. They are trail guides through the forest of shelves and aisles—you turn a person loose who has limited skills, and he’ll be walloped by the branches. But librarians match up readers with the right books: “Hey, is this one too complicated? They why don’t you give this one a try?”
 Inside the library were Hispanic children and teenagers and their parents, and a few old souls. They sat in chairs reading, stood surveying the bilingual collection, and worked at the computers. These computers are the only ones that a lot of people in town have access to. The afterschool literacy and homework programs at the libraries are among the few safe places where parents can direct their children, away from the gangs.
 On this afternoon, parents read to their children in whispered Spanish, and the air felt nutritious. As Barry Lopez once said, “Sometimes a person needs a story more than food to stay alive.”
 I went back outside. Poets of every color were reading. People milled around with antiwar placards—“¡Libros si!¡Bombas no!” Older members of the community told stories from legends, history, their own families. Fernando Suarez stepped up to the mike and spoke of his nineteen year-old son, who had died not long before in Iraq. Suarez spoke first in English and then in Spanish, as he does frequently around the country, and your heart could hardly beat for the sadness.
 Maybe in Oaxaca children are still hearing stories that the elders tell, but these kids in Salinas are being raised by television sets: they are latchkey kids. Their parents work for the most part in the fields and in wealthy homes. If you are mesmerized by television stupidity, and don’t get to hear or read stories about your world, you can be fooled into thinking that the world isn’t miraculous—and it is.
 The media attention brought in enough money, partly as a result of that day, to keep the libraries open for a whole year. You might not call this a miracle, exactly, but if you had been at the emergency read-in, you would see that it was at least the beginning of one.
A bunch of normally self-obsessed artist types came together to say to the people of Salinas: We care about your children, your stories, and your freedom. Something has gone so wrong in this country that needs to be fixed, and we care about that. Reading and books are medicine. Stories are written and told by and for people who have been broken, but who have risen up, or will rise, if attention is paid to them. Those people are you and us. Stories and truth are splints for the soul, and that makes today a sacred gathering. Now we were all saying: Pass it on.
[Pictured] John Steinbeck Library, Salinas, California, 2009

HAPPY BIRTHDAY ANNE LAMOTT!

Anne Lamott is an acclaimed novelist and non-fiction writer, as well as a passionate political activist, public speaker, and writing teacher. But, it’s her tireless support of public libraries that we would like to spotlight and celebrate today. In that spirit, we are proud to present Anne’s moving contribution to our just released book The Public Library: A Photographic Essay.

Steinbeck Country

In Salinas, word went out. This is how many tribal stories begin: word goes out to the people of a community that there is a great danger or that a wrong is being committed. This is how I first found out that the governor planned to close the public libraries in Salinas, making it the largest city in the United States to lose its libraries because of budget cuts.

Without getting into any mudslinging about whether or not our leaders are clueless, bullying, nonreading numbskulls,let me just say that when word went out that the three libraries—the John Steinbeck, the Cesar Chavez, and El Gabilan—were scheduled for closing, a whole lot of people rose up as one to say, This does not work for us. Salinas is one of the poorest communities in the state of California, in one of the richest counties in the country. The city and the surrounding area serve as the setting for so many of Steinbeck’s great novels. Think farmworkers, fields of artichokes and garlic, faded stucco houses stained with dirt, tracts of ticky-tacky housing, James Dean’s face in East of Eden, strawberry fields, and old gas stations.

Now think about closing the libraries there, closing the buildings that hold the town’s books, all those stories about people and wisdom and justice and life and silliness and laborers bending low to pick the strawberries. You’d have to be crazy to bring such obvious karmic repercussions down on yourself. So in early April, a group of writers and actors fought back, showing up in Salinas for a twenty-four-hour “emergency read-in.”

Please join Conversations on the Hudson author Nick Hand at these upcoming NY events where he will discuss his five-hundred-mile journey through the hills, mountains, and countryside of the Hudson Valley.

Sunday April 13, 4pm
Oblong Books & Music
Montgomery Row
6422 Montgomery Street
Rhinebeck, NY 12572
http://www.oblongbooks.com

Tuesday April 15, 7pm
Best Made Company
36 White Street 
New York, NY 10013
http://www.bestmadeco.com

Wednesday April 16, 7pm
Rapha Cycle Club NYC
64 Gansevoort Street
New York City 10014
http://pages.rapha.cc/clubs/new-york

Our friends at Abrams & Chronicle Books were at the London Stationery Show last week, and they sent us this great news:
The Pattern Box was named runner-up in this year’s Stationery Awards in the category of Social Stationery. We couldn’t be more proud of our collaboration with New York’s Textile Arts Center.
Get yours here, and be sure to stock up on stamps!

Our friends at Abrams & Chronicle Books were at the London Stationery Show last week, and they sent us this great news:

The Pattern Box was named runner-up in this year’s Stationery Awards in the category of Social Stationery. We couldn’t be more proud of our collaboration with New York’s Textile Arts Center.

Get yours here, and be sure to stock up on stamps!

Happy Birthday Jorn Utzon!

Pritzker Prize winning architect Utzon (1918-2008) is the celebrated designer of the Sydney Opera House among other stunning works. Here  he is with his family in his house in Denmark, along with his most famous building, as seen in our recently published monograph Jorn Utzon: Drawings and Buildings.

How well do you know the inner-workings of your bicycle?

The Bike Deconstructed: A Grand Tour of the Modern Bicycle by Richard Hallett is available now.

April is National Landscape Architecture Month!

It’s also the month that The American Society of Landscape Architects New York announces the winners of their Annual Design Awards. We are thrilled to report that this year’s winners include James Corner Field Operations.

On May 20th, we will publish The Landscape Imagination: Collected Essays of James Corner 1990–2010. In his follow up to the acclaimed Recovering Landscape, Corner discusses two decades of projects, including Tongva Park & Ken Gensler Square, the High Line and Fresh Kills Park in NYC, University of Puerto Rico Botanical Garden in Puerto Rico, Qianhai Water City in China, and competition entries for parks in Helsinki, and Toronto.

Hey Bostonians — Studio Life events tonight!

Friday, April 4 / 3pm
Author talk and book presentation by Sarah Trigg
Boston University, 855 Commonwealth Ave
Hosted by the School of Visual Arts and the Boston University Art Gallery

Friday, April 4 / 6–8pm
Book Signing at Samason Projects
450 Harrison Ave

Studio Life: Rituals, Collections, Tools, and Observations on the Artistic Process, is available now.

Know where to find some Guastavino tile work? Take a photo and upload it to PalacesForThePeople.com, and don’t forget to tweet it with the #Guastavino hashtag! Through Sept. 7, The Museum of the City of New York is holding an exhibition on Rafael Guastavino called Palaces for the People: Guastavino and the Art of Structural Tile, curated by G. Martin Moeller Jr. and John Ochsendorf, and you can help uncover Guastavino’s spaces!

For more information on the work of Guastavino, pick up a copy of Ochsendorf’s book, Guastavino Vaulting: The Art of Structural Tile, and check out this article in the New York Review of Books!

Discussion - free and open to the public
April 11, noon-2 p.m.
Butler Library, Room 523, Columbia University

Guastavino’s Palaces for the People: from archive to exhibition

The speakers will discuss the history of the Guastavino archive, from its last-minute discovery and rescue by Columbia University professor George R. Collins to the creation and design of the exhibition, Palaces for the People. 

• John Ochsendorf, MIT: 
The Guastavino Company and the exhibition, Palaces for the People

• Janet Parks, Avery Library, Columbia University: 
The Guastavino Archive: from acquisition to exhibition

• Chysanthe Broikos, National Building Museum: 
Nature of Architectural Exhibitions

• Daniel Fouad, C&G Design: 
Designing for architectural exhibition