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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The Works
Anatomy of a City
Kate Ascher
Kate Ascher could not have chosen a much drier topic for a book than water mains, parking meters, railroad classification yards, and the other doodads of city infrastructure. But in Ascher's captivating book, The Works, the innards of New York City...
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Gables and Fables
A Portrait of San Francisco's Pacific Heights
Anne Bloomfield, Arthur Bloomfield
Charming and deeply informed, part historical detective work and part gossip column, this storied tour of 110 of Pacific Heights’ grand old edifices offers an architectural and social history of one of San Francisco’s most fabled neighborhoods.
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BEAT
Photographs of the Beat Era
Christopher Felver
There has never before been a book filled with this many photographs of equal Beat Era personalities -- the most comprehensive photography collection of the people, players, and friends of the Beat era in American literature.
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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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The Metamorphosis
Franz Kafka
Acclaimed graphic artist Peter Kuper presents a brilliant, darkly comic reimagining of Kafka’s classic tale of family, alienation, and a giant bug. Kuper’s electric drawings—which merge American cartooning with German...
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The Anthropology of Turquoise
Reflections on Desert, Sea, Stone, and Sky
Ellen Meloy
Greater than Silko, equal to Solnit. What an immense pleasure to hear the voice of this smart and witty desert dweller, and how restorative to know that human beings can be like this. Yes, there is some turquoise involved. —Recommended by Gent
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Bohemian Paris
Picasso, Modigliani, Matisse, and the Birth of Modern Art
Dan Franck
A legendary capital of the arts, Paris hosted some of the most legendary developments in world culture -- particularly at the beginning of the twentieth century, with the flowering of fauvism, cubism, dadaism, and surrealism. In Bohemian Paris, Dan...
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On Photography
Susan Sontag
Susan Sontag has written four novels, The Benefactor, Death Kit, The Volcano Lover, and In America, which won the 2000 National Book Award for fiction; a collection of stories, I, etcetera; several plays, including Alice in Bed; and five books of...
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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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Air Guitar
Essays on Art & Democracy
Dave Hickey
Air Guitar is Dave Hickey's "memoir without tears"—a journey through the vernacular cultural landscape of the United States in the second half of the twentieth century. Looking back from the vantage-point of his adopted hometown of Las Vegas, Hickey specu
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The Object Stares Back
On the Nature of Seeing
James Elkins
In this “remarkable tour de force” (Publishers Weekly)-a “ceaselessly thought-provoking book” (Kirkus Reviews)-art historian James Elkins marshals psychology, philosophy, science, and art history to show how seeing alters the thing seen and transforms...
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What Is Art?
Leo Tolstoy
During his decades of world fame as a novelist, Tolstoy also wrote prolifically in a series of essays and polemics on issues of morality, social justice and religion. These works culminated in What is Art?, published in 1898. Impassioned and...
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The Society of the Spectacle
Guy Debord
Few works of political and cultural theory have been as enduringly provocative as Guy Debord's The Society of the Spectacle. From its publication amid the social upheavals of the 1960s up to the present, the volatile theses of this book have...
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About Looking
John Berger
As a novelist, art critic, and cultural historian, John Berger is a writer of dazzling eloquence and arresting insight whose work amounts to a subtle, powerful critique of the canons of our civilization. In About Looking he explores our role as...

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