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Thank you for helping us support artists, craftspeople, makers and designers in Aotearoa. Your order has been processed, you’ll receive an email with confirmation and order details. 


Toro Whakaara Reading Room

Books on the built environment

Extend your knowledge around our built environment through a selection of books available for browsing at Objectspace. These titles, descriptions of their content and where to buy them is provided in bookmarks in our browsing copies, and here: 

Making Ways: Alternative Architectural Practice in Aotearoa
Kathy Waghorn and Mike Davis

Motivated by the urgency of the challenges we all now face - environmental, social and economic - young architects in Aotearoa are inventing new, alternative forms of practice. In September and October 2019, Making Ways: Alternative architectural practice in Aotearoa took place at Objectspace. Taking the format of a staged, live, rolling workshop of events, the exhibition included four practices that have emerged in Aotearoa New Zealand in response to this context. Through essays, interviews and photographs, this volume documents and reflects upon the exhibition and contextualises the impetus toward ‘alternative’ forms of practice it captured. 

Design by Amy Yalland. 

Publisher: Objectspace
Published: 2020
Available from our bookshop at the gallery and online

mono.kultur #48 Eyal Weizman / Forensic Architecture

Made up of architects, lawyers, journalists, scientists, designers, and more, Forensic Architecture is part investigative research lab, human rights activism hub, political think tank, journalism bureau, artists’ collective, and detective agency. Based at Goldsmiths, University of London, the group investigate the wider repercussions of human rights and environmental violations by the means of architectural thinking. In 10 years of work, they have researched illegal detention sites in Cameroon, examined police shootings in Chicago and elsewhere, modelled a prison in Syria using victims’ memories of sound, and digitally recreated the fires at Grenfell Tower in London. At its forefront is Eyal Weizman, a British Israeli architect.

Publisher: mono.kultur
Published: Autumn 2020
Available from KLAY:

mono.kultur #46: Francis Kéré, Of Clay and Community

mono.kultur's most colourful issue yet presents the life and work of architect Francis Kéré, known in equal measure for his lighthearted and innovative architecture, his remarkable background, and his infectious sense of optimism. And his path is an extraordinary one: beginning in Gando, a small village in Burkina Faso, and moving all the way to West Berlin in the 1980s, where Kéré would end up studying architecture. His graduation project was the school Gando never had – built in 2001 with the help of the people it was designed for, the village community. It was also the starting point for his own practice that celebrates architecture as a fundamentally social act.

Publisher: mono.kultur
Published: Autumn 2018
Available from KLAY:

Lloyd Kahn & Bob Easton 

With over 1,000 photographs, Shelter is a classic celebrating the imagination, resourcefulness, and exuberance of human habitat. It includes a history of shelter and the evolution of building types: tents, yurts, timber buildings, barns, small homes, domes, etc. There is a section on building materials, including heavy timber ­construction and stud framing, as well as stone, straw bale, adobe, ­plaster, and bamboo. The spirit of the ’60s counterculture is evident, and the emphasis is on creating your own shelter (or space) with your own hands. A joyful, ­inspiring book.

Publisher: Shelter Publications
Published: 1973
Available from KLAY:

Together! The New Architecture of the Collective

This book presents a unique overview of twenty-two contemporary collective housing projects from Europe, Asia, and the United States. The project register is complemented by a lush visual timeline, which places this new collective turn in housing within a genealogy of utopian housing projects and countercultural movements from the nineteenth century on. At the heart of the publication are visual essays by the photographer Daniel Burchard, which give the reader a subtle introduction to the inclusive domestic atmospheres of eight selected housing projects in Germany, Switzerland, Austria, and Japan. Critical essays by Andreas Hofer, Ethel Baraona Pohl, Anna Puigjaner, Robert Temel, Yuma Shinohara, and the editors of the book analyze the search for the collective as the defining force in the development of housing from the beginnings of modernism until today.

Publisher: Ruby Press
Published: 2017
Available from KLAY:

The Materials Book

To achieve truly climate-friendly architecture means not just switching to sources of renewable power, but building with materials that produce zero carbon emissions, use no fossil fuels, and create no waste. This publication contains essays, case studies, and a catalogue of building materials compiled by more than 60 architects, engineers, and scientists from around the world that deal with the environmentally mindful and socially responsible use of materials and resources. Ideas range from centuries-old traditions to newly developed biomaterials, from low-tech, artisanal methods to advanced digital technologies, and from incremental shifts to massive, top-down changes.

Publisher: Ruby Press
Published: 2020
Available from KLAY:

Brokered Dreams: 98 Uses for Vacant Space
Edited by Mark Amery

Published by Aotearoa public art organisation Letting Space, Brokered Dreams: 98 Uses for Vacant Space discusses and catalogues a unique arts and community development programme. Urban Dream Brokerage brokers the creative use of vacant space, aiming to grow diverse community building living spaces in cities. From a mental health gym and a political hair salon, to a people’s cinema and a moodbank, this book details many inventive projects brokered between 2013 and 2018 in Wellington, Dunedin, Masterton and Porirua with words from both Letting Space and the occupants.

Publisher: Letting Space
Published: 2020
Available from Urban Dream Brokerage:

Designing Disorder: Experiments and Disruptions in the City
Richard Sennett and Pablo Sendra 

 A manifesto for the Open City: vibrant, disordered, adaptable. In 1970 Richard Sennett published the ground breaking The Uses of Disorder, which argues that the ideal of a planned and ordered city was flawed, likely to produce a fragile, restrictive urban environment. Fifty years later, Sennett returns to these still fertile ideas and alongside campaigner and architect Pablo Sendra, sets out an agenda for the design and ethics of the Open City. The public spaces of our cities are under siege from planners, privatisation and increased surveillance. Our streets are becoming ever more lifeless and ordered. What is to be done? Can disorder be designed?

Publisher: Verso Books
Published: 2020
Available from:

The Ideal City: Exploring Urban Futures

The city is an always changing human experiment. But in the last half century, it has changed more than ever before - with little sign of slowing down. As this phenomenon takes place, an increasing number of architects, innovators and policy-makers are rethinking the city to make the most of space and resources. This book chronicles the design of urban futures. From apps designed to curb food waste to inventive fresh water infrastructure, The Ideal City explores the many initiatives and experiments, all with the shared goal of making the cities of tomorrow a happier, healthier and more inclusive place to be. 

Publisher: Die Gestalten Verlag | gestalten
Published: 2021
Available from:

Architecture and urban planning titles available to browse at Objectspace