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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Grapefruit
A Book of Instructions and Drawings by Yoko Ono
Yoko Ono
Quiet.It's a bomb. --Recommended by Tân, City Lights Books Back in print for the first time in nearly thirty years, here is Yoko Ono's whimsical, delightful, subversive, startling book of instructions for art and for life. "Burn this book after...
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The Pencil
A History of Design and Circumstance
Henry Petroski
Henry Petroski traces the origins of the pencil back to ancient Greece and Rome, writes factually and charmingly about its development over the centuries and around the world, and shows what the pencil can teach us about engineering and technology...
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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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American Canyon
Amarnath Ravva
Blending myth with interviews and first-person narrative, California-based writer Amarnath Ravva's American Canyon uses prose, documentary footage and still photos to recount the fragmented and ever-evolving story of one person's apprehension of the ghosts of history.
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The World Atlas of Street Art and Graffiti
Rafael Schacter
Painted murals first appeared in Latin America in the early 20th century; in the 1950s, spray-can graffiti associated with Latino gangs followed, notably the "cholo" graffiti of Los Angeles. Today, street art has traveled to nearly every corner of the...
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Unstill Life
A Daughter's Memoir of Art and Love in the Age of Abstraction
Gabrielle Selz
In 1958, soon after Gabrielle Selz was born, she, her parents and her sister moved to New York, where her father, Peter Selz, would begin his job as the chief curator of painting and sculpture at the Museum of Modern Art. What followed was a whirlwind childhood spent among art and artists in the heyday of Abstract Expressionism. Gabrielle grew...
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Just Kids
Patti Smith
Winner of the National Book Award. 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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High Sierra of California
Gary Snyder
Combining the dramatic and meticulous work of printmaker Tom Killion--accented by quotes from John Muir--and the journal writings of Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Gary Snyder, The High Sierra of California is a tribute to the bold, jagged peaks that...
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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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Gonzo
The Art
Ralph Steadman
A three-decade retrospective of Ralph Steadman’s caustic, witty, outrageous art-including illustrations from Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas and the other legendary collaborations with Hunter S. Thompson that spawned gonzo journalism.
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Why Photography Matters
Jerry Thompson
Photography matters, writes Jerry Thompson, because of how it works — not only as an artistic medium but also as a way of knowing. It matters because how we understand what photography is and how it works tell us something about how we understand anything. With these provocative observations, Thompson begins a wide-ranging and lucid meditation...
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101 Things to Learn in Art School
Kit White
What is the first thing to learn in art school? "Art can be anything." The second thing? "Learn to draw." With 101 Things to Learn in Art School, artist and teacher Kit White delivers and develops such...

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