Perhaps with specifications in mind Mies van der Rohe, in his 1959 "less is more" article in the New York Herald Tribune, said "Architecture starts when you carefully put two bricks together. There it begins."
Through projects as diverse in time and technique as the ancient Parthenon, the sixteenth century Chateau Chambord, art deco houses in New Zealand and the National Museum of Australia, specifying, literally "being specific", has become an increasingly sophisticated and essential building design skill.
Specifying Architecture - a guide to professional practice, argues that whatever the aesthetic and other design sensibilities of a building, it has to be specified and specified well.
The book discusses contractual, technical and editorial issues in the planning, production and use of specifications. It sets out best-practice professional guidelines, putting modern specification writing into an historical and international context.
This second edition has a new chapter on practice in the UK and US with expanded historical material and contract extracts. The text on specifying construction methods, performance specifying, design and construct, use of standards and product conformance has been completely revised.
The Australian practice on which the book is based is a blend of UK and US techniques making this book an invaluable reference for building professionals and students anywhere in the world. The book is illustrated and has a comprehensive index and bibliography.
Author John Gelder RAIA RIBA CSI is an architect with extensive experience in construction documentation and in the publishing of master specifications. He was Chief Editor of NATSPEC and is now Special Projects Co-ordinator of the UK National Building Specification.