Berlin: Rudolf Mosse, 1928. 1st to 3rd Edition. Hardcover. 1. bis 3. Auflage. Folio. ix, 82, pp. Original cloth-backed over yellow, printed paper-covered boards with black lettering on cover, yellow lettering on spine.
Critical study of American architecture by German-Jewish architect Erich Mendelsohn. The 77 b/w reproductions in photogravure were taken by the architect on his visit to the United States in 1924. Mendelsohn's goal was to convey a new vision of the contemporary city. In his foreword he points to the pros and cons of European Americanism, which he sees as a major opposition between civilization and culture. Photographs show the Brooklyn Bridge and Manhattan's skyline, the Equitable Trust Building, Trinity Church, Times Square, 5th Avenue, Madison Avenue, Wall Street, Broadway, Shelton Hotel, New York Harbor, Chicago's Federal Reserve Bank, Michigan Avenue, building of the Chicago Tribune, various Chicago street scenery, as well as architecture in Detroit and Buffalo.
15 photographs by the Danish architect Knud Lönberg-Holm, particularly those showing Detroit, are not credited to him, only in the later, expanded edition of 1928 was Lönberg-Holm given credit. Noteworthy that Mendelsohn's so-called 'photographic modernity' was often substantiated by pointing to those photographs in this book taken by Lönberg-Holm.
El Lissitzky was so impressed with "Amerika" that he said the volume “thrills us like a dramatic film. Before our eyes move pictures that are absolutely unique. In order to understand some of the photographs you must lift the book over your head and rotate it.”
Text in German. Some sunning along top edge of cover and about half an inch abrasion on back cover and a few indentations next to it. Covers somewhat rubbed. Contains an Ex Libris plate of Haus Henschel on inside front cover, and a library marker with C154 inked to top, and Oscar R. Henschel, Kassel, printed below and pasted to upper left corner of inside back cover. Binding in overall good-, interior in very good condition. g to vg. Item #44721