NONFICTION : STYLES OF LIVING: THE BEST OF CASA VOGUE, edited by Isa Vercelloni (Rizzoli: $35). : THE JERSEY DEVIL DESIGN/BUILD BOOK by Michael J. Crosbie (Gibbs M. Smith, P.O. Box 667, Layton, Utah 84041: $19.95, paperback).
Since its first issue in 1968, Casa Vogue magazine has been consciously, at times self-consciously, riding the various waves of residential design, not only those welling up in Italy, but also elsewhere in Europe and the United States. Collected here from those issues are a well-illustrated sumptuous sampling of restorations, conversions and new construction done in a variety of styles and fads, including modern, late modern, post modern and anti-modern, as well as traditional, and all quite trendy. Also included is an appropriately reverential review of select, lesser- known landmark houses. The total is a superbly produced collection. Not particularly well written or produced, certainly not for a book concerned with design, but nonetheless fascinating is “The Jersey Devil Design/Build Book.” Jersey Devil is the name of a group of architects who have designed some very playful residential structures, and then actually got up from their drafting tables and put on tool belts to build and craft them. The results were quite distinctive, engaging and provocative.