One man's quest to seek out--and be inspired by--the great historic kitchens of Canada and the USA.
John Ota was a man on a mission--to put together the perfect kitchen. He and his wife had been making do with a room that was frankly no great advertisement for John's architectural expertise. It just about did the job but for a room that's supposed to be the beating heart of a home and a joy to cook in, the Otas' left a lot to be desired. And so John set out on a quest across North America, exploring examples of excellent designs throughout history, to learn from them and apply their lessons to his own restoration. Along the way, he learned about the origins and evolution of the kitchen, its architecture and its appliances. He cooked, with expert instruction. And he learned too about the homes and their occupants, who range from pilgrims to President Thomas Jefferson, from turn of the century tenement dwellers to 21st century Vancouver idealists, from Julia Child to Georgia O'Keeffe, and from Elvis Presley to Louis Armstrong.
John Ota has a refreshingly upbeat approach and a hunger for knowledge (and indeed for food). His energy and enthusiasm are contagious, and his insights of lasting value. Illustrated throughout, with photographs and also with drawings by the author, this is a book for homeowners, home makers, interior designers, cooks, armchair historians, and for anyone who--like John Ota before them--is looking for inspiration for a renovation.
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In The Kitchen, John Ota celebrates the room that is the heart of every home. As an architect who celebrates minimalism, Ota’s journey challenges him to rethink what’s important. From the warm memories of his mother’s lovingly chaotic cooking space to the premeditated clutter of Julia Child’s iconic kitchen, he digs deep to explore how our idea of the room has evolved; what it has been and what it will become. Impeccably researched and beautifully written, there is no other book I know of that is quite like it.” Bonnie Stern