The Good Life

A Guided Visit to the Houses of Modernity

New and revised edition of Iñaki Ábalos’s highly acclaimed book on seven iconic 20th-century houses, some of them actually built, others merely imagined or realized as film sets.


  • May 2017   approx. CHF 39.00 | eur 38.00


Title Information

Iñaki Ábalos

New revised and expanded edition

, 2017


208 pages, 100 b/w illustrations

21 x 31 cm

ISBN 978-3-03860-051-0


With his book The Good Life, Iñaki Ábalos takes the reader on a tour of seven iconic 20th-century houses. Some of them were actually built, others merely imagined or film sets: Mies van der Rohe’s House with Three Patios, Martin Heidegger’s cabin in the Black Forrest, the houses from Jacques Tati’s movie Mon oncle, Picasso’s house in Cannes, the New York loft of Andy Warhol and the Factory, The self-build house from Buster Keaton’s movie One Week, the house in David Hockney’s painting A Bigger Splash.

Ábalos’s selection represents a variety of concepts for living. It is based on a clear archetypal assignment of a place to a particular modern way of living. He analyses each house from key philosophical points of view. He demonstrates relations between architectural concepts, philosophical schools, and various approaches to planning and designing, constructing, and inhabiting a space. Ábalos offers an intellectual introduction to these icons, rather than a manual for the design of residential architecture. He focuses on the 20 century’s radical pluralism, rather than celebrating modernism as a triumph of positivism.

The new and revised edition of this book, first published in 2001 by Gustavo Gili and out of print and sought-after for many years now, makes Ábalos's significant contribution to the perennial discourse on concepts of living available again.

Authors & Editors

Iñaki Ábalos

 is co-director of Ábalos+Sentkiewicz Arquitectos. He is also a Professor of Architectural Design and director of the Laboratorio de Técnicas y Paisajes Contemporáneos (LTPC) at ETSAM since 2002 and Professor-in-Residence at Harvard Graduate School of Design since 2012.