Not just for kids

Friday 31 Oct 2014

WAN reviews this beautifully illustrated book which takes the reader on a fun journey through the evolution of architecture

‘Sunrise to High-Rise' is a beautiful concertina book that takes the reader on a journey through the evolution of the global built environment from Neolithic times right up to the modern age. The delightful pencil-drawn illustrations by Lucy Dalzell bring 70 of the world's most iconic buildings to life, with short texts explaining the significance of each one.

Fully expanded, the book is over two metres' long, so looks fantastic on the wall or framed to appreciate the full extent of the visual timeline, although it can equally well be read like a normal book.

Dalzell's friendly illustrations play around with size and perspective in an appealing fashion, while a short text identifies each building. The overall effect is both fun and memorable, with a well-rounded selection of structures depicted.

Paris' Eiffel Tower perches jauntily atop Austria's Karlsplatz Stadtbahn station while a tiny photographic monkey clambers over the US Gateway Arch, the tallest arch in the world. Elsewhere, a small fox stares out below an illustration of London's Tate Modern.

The illustrations are peppered with such tiny photographic depictions of people and animals, creating a surprising and amusing effect. The book has more than just visual appeal, however: each building is accompanied by a short description of its architectural significance, while the reverse of the book offers an accessible introduction to the subject through simple explanations of movements in architecture.

The book has a luxurious feel, but will withstand multiple opening up and refolding thanks to the heavy textured paper stock within the exposed-edge greyboard covers.

Two metres of illustration include, among many others: Stonehenge, La Sagrada Familia, the Leaning Tower of Pisa, the Chrysler Building, Eames House, Salk Institute, Sydney Opera House, Pompidou Centre, Tate Modern, Jewish Museum Berlin, and St Basel's Cathedral.

Published by Cicada Books, Sunrise to High-Rise is a delightful introduction to architecture or reference work for children, but is equally appealing to adults thanks to Dalzell's fun and colourful illustrations.

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