Coffee-table book. Platforms for international exchange, multi-functional meeting places and ambassadors for their destinations: convention centres are highly valuable public facilities both in terms of their usefulness and the attention they attract. Architects today are skilled in making them unmistakable symbols of their cities, but they also have to consider planners’ requirements and sustainability and urban development issues.
Chris van Uffelen has put 78 of the finest examples into a coffee-table book containing many photographs. Providing no detailed information on capacity, and rather vaguely subdivided into the chapters “stand alone”, “in comfort” and “in context”, it is certainly no workbook, but the magnificent photographs leave you inspired by the visionary power of the convention industry. Take, for example, the futuristic renderings of the (unrealised) convention centre in Taichung, Taiwan designed by Chinese firm MAD Architects. The cover shows the sculptural forms of the Darmstadtium in Darmstadt.
Chris van Uffelen
296 pages, 572 colour photographs
Braun Publishing AG, Switzerland