Art & Architecture
Books in this online selection represent only a sliver of what we offer in the store. If you've got a particular book in mind and want to check on its availability, call us at 415-362-8193.

   
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Here
Richard McGuire
A beautiful exploration of a single place through time, from void to form to void again. Go ahead, open to a page, any page... —Recommended by Vanessa, City Lights Books Also recommended by Paul, City Lights Books
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How to Read Buildings
A Crash Course in Architectural Styles
Carol Davidson Cragoe
This practical primer is a handbook for decoding a building’s style, history, and evolution. Every building contains clues embedded in its design that identify not only its architectural style but also the story of who designed it, who it was built...
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Just Kids
Patti Smith
Just Kids illuminates the impressive lover of literature that Patti Smith is. Her memoir will be of particular interest to City Lights enthusiasts as she is our quintessential reader, a fan of the Surrealists...
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Kenneth Patchen A Centennial Selection
Kenneth Patchen, Jonathan Clark
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'Pataphysics
A Useless Guide
Andrew Hugill
Of all the French cultural exports over the last 150 years or so, 'pataphysics—the science of imaginary solutions and the laws governing exceptions—has proven to be one of the most durable. Originating in the wild imagination of French poet and playwright Alfred Jarry and his schoolmates, resisting clear definition, purposefully useless...
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A Place of My Own
The Architecture of Daydreams
Michael Pollan
Michael Pollan’s unmatched ability to draw lines of connection between our everyday experiences— whether eating, gardening, or building—and the natural world has been the basis for the popular success of his many works of nonfiction, including the...
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Prison/Culture
Sharon E. Bliss, Kevin B. Chen, Steve Dickison, Mark Dean Johnson, Rebeka Rodriguez
Nearly fifty artists, poets, and activists examine the contemporary prison system through heartrending art and community
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S O S — Calling All Black People
A Black Arts Movement Reader
John H. Bracey Jr., Sonia Sanchez, James Smethurst
This volume brings together a broad range of key writings from the Black Arts Movement of the 1960s and 1970s, among the most significant cultural movements in American history. The aesthetic counterpart of the Black Power movement, it burst onto the scene in the form of artists circles, writers workshops, drama groups, dance troupes...
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San Francisco Chinatown
A Guide to Its History and Architecture
Philip P. Choy
Both a history of America's oldest Chinese community and a guide to its significant sites and architecture San Francisco Chinatown is the first book of its kind, written by someone born and raised there.
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Secret Exhibition
Six California Artists
Rebecca Solnit
Secret Exhibition chronicles a vital California art movement, focusing on six artists – Wallace Bergman, Jess, Bruce Conner, Jay DeFeo, Wally Hendrick, and George Herms – who broke new ground with provocative work, especially in assemblage and...
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Shock Treatment
First Edition
Karen Finley
San Francisco: City Lights., (1990) First Edition. 8vo, 145 pages. Signed by Finley on the title page. Fine in pictorial wrappers.
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Shoot An Iraqi
Art, Life and Resistance Under the Gun
Wafaa Bilal, Kari Lydersen
An award-winning Iraqi artist's life story and the impact of his highly provocative interactive art piece
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Skovbo
Viggo Mortensen
In this new collection of images and poems are trees and the memory of trees, ghosts, words, nights, days, lives, deaths, and safe haven for them all in the place where "...the twigs become branches, / And the mist becomes make-believe..." (Osip Mandelstam). If you daren't enter the forest, or cannot find it, then perhaps you might...
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Songs of Innocence and Experience
Shewing the Two Contrary States of the Human Soul, 1789-1794
William Blake
Here is a beautifully illustrated edition of Blake's classic poems. The text of each poem is given in letterpress on the page facing the color plate, and a brief commentary by Sir Geoffrey Keynes on each poem follows. It is printed on paper especially...

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