Form Pioneering Design Magazine Reviews Greening Modernism

From the review by Taylor Griggs:

Carl Stein’s New Book, Greening Modernism: Preservation, Sustainability, and the Modern Movement, raises discussion about the connection between sustainable practices and modern architecture. Through addressing the environmental impacts of building decisions, the author argues the inherent sustainability in Modernist design. Focusing upon the importance of preserving and reusing historical buildings as a key sustainability strategy, Greening Modernism serves as a resource for architects, engineers, urban planners, as well as environmentalists. To support his case, Stein provides quantitative data to support the reintegration of modernist strategies, through reducing our dependency on finite resources, such as petroleum. The book rings clear with the sentiment that through understanding the environmental importance of their decisions, architects can continue their practice while doing their part to save the planet.

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Elemental Hosts Greening Modernism Launch Party

Last Thursday, December 9th, Elemental hosted the launch party for principal founder Carl Stein’s new book “Greening Modernism”. Tom Stoelker of the Architect’s Newspaper writes:

Bodacious bourbon pours complimented savory vittles at the yet-to-be-opened Hudson Clearwater in Greenwich Village last night. The restaurant’s first event launched Carl Stein’s new book, Greening Modernism: preservation, sustainability and the modern movement (W.W. Norton, $60.00). The affair had a decidedly down to earth flavor, though the elegant crowd resembled intermission at The Met. The venue seemed a natural fit for Stein of Elemental Architecture, since Elemental’s John Barboni designed the space using salvaged material culled from the 180-year-old carriage house.

“From my perspective, it fits into all the themes of the book,” Barboni said from behind a kitchen counter made of the structure’s former floorboards. “Green is not a newfound subject for Carl.”

From atop a small flight of stairs Stein thanked his family and colleagues, then settled in with the band to play banjo.

In his statement to the crowd of well over 100 in attendance, Stein offered:

“My thanks to Norton for publishing Greening Modernism, to Kristen Holt-Browning who initiated this project, to editor Nancy Green who gave invaluable support as the book developed, and to Guenet Abraham for the book design.  In particular, I’d like to note the tremendous patience that they all displayed in dealing with a total pain in the ass author.  And to all of the people at Elemental who made the space, both literally and figuratively for Greening Modernism to happen, especially my partners, Tom Abraham and John Barboni and to Michelle Black, the backbone of Elemental.  And to the three people to whom the book is dedicated, my mother Ethel Stein who unfortunately could not be here tonight, my wife Nancy Stein and my daughter and recently colleague, Jesse Denning. Continue reading

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Chesapeake Home Magazine Recommends Greening Modernism “For The Innovator”

Excerpted from the Article:

New house and garden design books make the perfect holiday gift.

Over the years, I’ve collected hundreds of coffee table books on interior design, architecture, home improvement, landscaping and the decorative arts. Beautifully photographed, informative, and inspirational, many of the books would make the perfect present — or even a gift to yourself. Here are a few of my favorite new releases and links to our Amazon store for easy shopping!

For the innovator
‘Greening Modernism’
Norton 2010, $60

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Gifts on the Table – Greening Modernism Recommended by The Baltimore Sun

From the article by Dennis Hockman:

While “Greening Modernism” is more academic treatise than coffee table book, it does offer an accessible resource for understanding how and why green buildings can play a dominant role in addressing the global energy and environmental crises.

Based on sound economic analysis, the book shows how the tenets of modern design are eco-friendly and pragmatic. Author Carl Stein, nationally recognized for his contributions to the field of sustainable design, explores the cause/effect relationship between individual building design decisions and natural resources.

Rather than focus on specifics like bamboo floors and low-VOC paints, the book takes a big-picture approach to sustainability. Geared toward practitioners and students of architecture, engineering, planning and environmentalism, “Greening Modernism” is delivered in short, easy-to-digest sections, making it perfect for homeowners interested in scratching more than the surface of green design.

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Greening Modernism Book Launch

Greening Modernism Book Launch
Join author Carl Stein
6-9pm Thursday
December 9th, 2010
447 Hudson St. (enter on Morton St.)
New York, New York

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Greening Modernism Reviewed by Metropolis Magazine

Greening Modernism reviewed by Ann Lui  for Metropolis Magazine.

Metropolis Magazine

“A conversation between an architect and his client, first in their youth and later in old age, sets up Carl Stein’s argument for Greening Modernism, a book just released by W. W. Norton. While drinking wine and playing chess, the young client says to the architect, “We may not have a lot of money but we know how to live well.” Later, when both men have grown successful in wealth and circumstances, they sit and drink wine at the same table, again. This time the client says, “We may have a lot of money, but we [still] know how to live well.” Stein believes in a quality of life — and architecture — that’s dependent on a thoughtful, frugal consumption of natural resources. Continue reading

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Modern in a Time of Finite Resources – ‘Greening Modernism’ Review & Interview

An in-depth interview with author Carl Stein and review of Greening Modernism on Architects + Artisans. Also, see the slide-show of images from the book.

“It’s one of those topics that I find very hard to boil down into short, concise pieces,” said Carl Stein of his new book, “Greening Modernism,” from W. W. Norton Company.

And for good reason. It’s a complex subject, but tackled head-on by an architect who’s worked on projects ranging from a one-million-square-foot building in Shanghai, to the the restoration of Shepard Hall at City College of New York, to the AIA-award-winning South Jamaica Branch Library there. Continue reading

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Greening Modernism Symposium at Baruch College


How the Precepts & Rigor of a Defining 20th-Century Movement
Can Advance Sustainability

Thursday, December 9th 8:30am – 12:00pm
The William and Anita Newman Conference Center
Baruch College, CUNY
151 East 25th Street, Room 750
New York, NY 10010

To register and learn more about this event, please visit:

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Why are there so few sustainable buildings?

Tom Zeller has posted an interesting piece on the NY Times “Green” Blog titled “When Green Building Is Not Green Enough” concerning, among other things, the difficulty in stimulating widespread support for sustainable building policies.? I replied:

Mr. Zeller writes that ?the nation?s building stock plays a bigger role in energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions than many Americans might realize.? This is only true (a) because many Americans have chosen to ignore information that has been widely available for at least four decades and (b) powerful business and social interests have conducted a massive campaign of misinformation in order to maintain positions of economic and political power. Continue reading

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