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‘Native Places’ in Atlanta: A Capella Books Will Host Celebrated Architect/Author Frank Harmon, FAIA

Architect/author Frank Harmon wants to change the way we see the world around us. That’s why he wrote his new, critically acclaimed book Native Places: Drawing as a Way to See. On Sunday, June 2, Frank Reiss, the proprietor of A Capella Books in Atlanta, will host a book-signing event for Harmon beginning at 2 p.m. The event free and open to the public.

Published by ORO Editions and now in its second printing, Native Places: Drawing as a Way to See is a collection of 64 of Harmon’s watercolor sketches paired with brief essays he’s written about architecture, nature, everyday objects, and ordinary places.

The book’s purpose, Harmon says, is “to transform the way we see” and to disseminate his belief that hand drawing is not obsolete. According to this multi-award-winning architect who is also a professor at North Carolina State University’s College of Design, drawing give us “an opportunity to develop a natural grace in the way we view the world and take part in it.”

The sketch-essay pairings in the book first appeared in Harmon’s popular online journal NativePlaces.org. Culled from myriad sketchbooks he’s filled over the decades, convey the delight he finds in familiar objects and “native” places. The short essays, inspired by the sketches, offer his interpretations of what most of us overlook or take for granted.

“Like a child picking up fistfuls of seemingly commonplace stones, Harmon gathers places in all their forms and meanings and thoughtfully lays them in his book where the ordinary becomes extraordinary and everyday life takes on a new texture and meaning,” wrote Eleanor Spicer Rice, PhD, in her review of Native Places – one of many positive comments from critics, colleagues, and readers that are included on the book’s website www.nativeplacesthebook.com.

Fellow architect William Carpenter, FAIA, will introduce Harmon at the A Capella Books event. Carpenter is the founder and president of Lightroom Studio with offices in Decatur, GA, and Sao Luis, Maranhao, Brazil. Along with receiving national architecture and education awards, Carpenter once worked with the late Sam Mockbee, FAIA, founder of Auburn University’s iconoclastic Rural Studio in New Bern, Alabama, where Harmon lectures and leads Drawing Workshop for students.

After the introduction, Harmon will give a 20-minute presentation then take questions from the audience before signing copies of Native Places, which will be available at the store.

Now celebrating its 30th anniversary, A Capella Books is located at 208 Haralson Avenue NE, Atlanta, GA 30307 (404.681.5128). For more information, visit www.acapellabooks.com.

For more information on Frank Harmon and Native Places: Drawing as a Way to See, visit the book’s website (nativeplacesthebook.com) and Facebook page.

 

Frank sketching

Celebrated Architect/Author Frank Harmon To Present Lecture, Sketching Workshop in Old Town Alexandria

Hosted by the Northern Virginia Fine Arts Association

Frank sketching

Frank Harmon. (Photo by Christine Simeloff)

Frank Harmon, FAIA, a multi-award-winning architect from North Carolina and the author of the new critically acclaimed book Native Places: Drawing as a Way to See, will be in Old Town Alexandria, VA, on May 17th and 18th, sponsored by the Northern Virginia Fine Arts Association (NVFAA).

Harmon will give a lecture focused on his book and his reasons for writing it on Friday the 17th at 7 p.m. in the Athenaeum on the corner of South Lee and Prince streets. On Saturday the 18th beginning at 10 a.m., he will lead an Urban Sketching Workshop around Old Town. Participants will also gather at the Athenaeum.

Both events are free and open to the public. However, the NFVAA asks those interested in either or both to email admin@nvfaa.org. Participation in the Urban Sketching Workshop is limited.Native Places by Frank Harmon

Published by ORO Editions, Native Places: Drawing as a Way to See is a collection of 64 of Harmon’s watercolor sketches – some he drew over 30 years ago — paired with brief essays he’s written about architecture, nature, everyday objects, and ordinary places. The pairs first appeared in his popular online journal NativePlaces.org.

The sketches in Native Places convey the delight the architect finds in these places and things. The short essays, inspired by the sketches, offer his fresh interpretations of what most people take for granted. His goal with both the online journal and the book is “to transform the way we see,” he says, and to promote his belief that hand drawing offers “an opportunity to develop a natural grace in the way we view the world and take part in it.”

To that end, he will lead 15 sketching enthusiasts around Alexandria’s picturesque Old Town for the same sort of urban sketching workshop that has proven popular when he’s conducted it at Auburn University’s renowned Rural Studio in New Bern, Alabama; in Asheville and Raleigh, North Carolina; and elsewhere.

“We are very excited to have Frank Harmon come to the historic Athenaeum for two wonderful programs,” said NVFAA’s Executive Director Veronica Szalus. “We’re looking forward to hearing Frank read from his book and share his engaging insights on sketching and the urban environment during the lecture, then show us how to learn to truly see the world around us through sketching during the Saturday workshop. It’s going to be a great weekend.”

The NVFAA will have copies of Native Places available for purchase. For more information on the book and its author, visit nativeplacesthebook.com.

An art gallery, historic landmark, and home of the NVFAA, the Athenaeum is located at 201 Prince Street, Alexandria, VA 22314 (703.548.0035).

 

E. Shaver, Booksellers Presents Frank Harmon and ‘Native Places’ in Historic Downtown Savannah

 E. Shaver Bookseller in historic downtown Savannah will host a presentation and book-signing event for award-winning architect Frank Harmon, FAIA, of Raleigh, NC, and his new book  Native Places: Drawing as a Way to See on Sunday, April 14, from 1-3 pm.

Ryan Madsen, Architecture Professor at the Savannah College of Art & Design, will introduce Harmon. The event is free and open to the public.

E Shaver, Booksellers in historic downtown Savannah.

Published by ORO Editions, Native Places: Drawing as a Way to See is a collection of 64 of Harmon’s watercolor sketches paired with brief essays he’s written about architecture, nature, and everyday objects and places that first appeared on his popular online journal NativePlaces.org. The sketches convey the delight he finds in ordinary places. The short essays, inspired by the sketches, offer his fresh interpretations of what most people take for granted.

Past NC Poet Laureate Fred Chappell describes Harmon’s book as “a sketch book, a memoir, travel journal, aesthetic experiment, a collection of small familiar essays, and maybe in some respects even a manifesto,” adding, “Native Places…has afforded me happy pleasures, different from any that I have before derived from a book.”

Harmon’s mission for Native Places is “to transform the way we see,” he says, and to promote his belief that hand drawing offers “an opportunity to develop a natural grace in the way we view the world and take part in it.”

Mission accomplished, according to Mike Welton, the architecture critic for the Raleigh News & Observer, who suggests Harmon’s book is “destined to change how we see this world.” Architect Tom Kundig, FAIA, of Olson-Kundig in Seattle, calls Native Places “a masterful legacy on all levels.”

Named one of the “17 Extraordinary Bookstores” in the world by Mother Nature Network (MMN.com), E. Shaver, Bookseller is located on historic Madison Square at 326 Bull Street, Savannah, GA 31401 (912-234-7257). For more information, visit http://www.eshaverbooks.com/. For more information on Frank Harmon and Native Places: Drawing as a Way to See, visit the book’s website (nativeplacesthebook.com) and Facebook page.

Cameron Village Library Welcomes Frank Harmon, ‘Native Places’

FRANK HARMON, FAIA (photo by William Morgan)

Cameron Village Regional Library will host a presentation and book-signing event for award-winning architect Frank Harmon, FAIA, on Wednesday, April 10, at 6 p.m., as he shares his new bookNative Places: Drawing as a Way to See.

Quail Ridge Books will provide and sell copies of Harmon’s book. The event is free and open to the public.

Published by ORO Editions, Native Places: Drawing as a Way to See is a collection of 64 of Harmon’s watercolor sketches paired with brief essays he’s written about architecture, nature, and everyday objects and places that first appeared on his popular online journal NativePlaces.org. The sketches convey the delight he finds in ordinary places. The short essays, inspired by the sketches, offer his fresh interpretations of what most people take for granted.

Past NC Poet Laureate Fred Chappell describes Harmon’s book as “a sketch book, a memoir, travel journal, aesthetic experiment, a collection of small familiar essays, and maybe in some respects even a manifesto,” adding, ““Native Places…has afforded me happy pleasures, different from any that I have before derived from a book.”

Harmon’s mission for Native Places is “to transform the way we see,” he says, and to promote his belief that hand drawing offers “an opportunity to develop a natural grace in the way we view the world and take part in it.”

Mission accomplished, according to Mike Welton, the architecture critic for the Raleigh News & Observer, who suggests Harmon’s book is “destined to change how we see this world.”

Flyleaf Books Welcomes Architect/Author Frank Harmon and ‘Native Places’ February 10th

Multi-award-winning architect/author Frank Harmon, FAIA, who designed the NC Botanical Garden Visitor Education Center on Old Mason Farm Road, will be in Chapel Hill on Sunday, February 10, when Flyleaf Books hosts a special event to celebrate his new book, Native Places: Drawing as a Way of Seeing.

Free and open to the public, the event will begin at 2 pm when Chapel Hill architect Phil Szostak, FAIA, introduces his friend, colleague, and mentor. Harmon will then discuss the genesis of his book and his passion for sketching in a 20-minute presentation. After a Q&A session with the audience, he will sign copies of Native Places, which will be available for purchase at Flyleaf.

Delight in Ordinary Places 

Published by ORO Editions, Native Places: Drawing as a Way to See is a collection of 64 of Harmon’s watercolor sketches paired with 200-word essays he’s written about architecture, nature, everyday objects and places that first appeared on his popular online journal NativePlaces.org. The sketches convey the delight he finds in ordinary places. The short essays, inspired by the sketches, offer his fresh interpretations of what most people take for granted.

Harmon’s goal for Native Places is, in fact, “to transform the way we see,” he says, and to promote his belief that hand drawing offers “an opportunity to develop a natural grace in the way we view the world and take part in it.” He will explain both concepts in his presentation.

“Each essay and corresponding drawing helped me appreciate the beauty in all types of buildings and the natural world that surrounds them.”

What others are saying about Native Places

In a letter to Harmon, poet, author, and former North Carolina poet laureate Fred Chappell wrote, “Native Places…has afforded me happy pleasures, different from any that I have before derived from a book. It is unusual in many ways, one of which is that it defies strict classification. It is a sketchbook, a memoir, travel journal, aesthetic experiment, a collection of small familiar essays, and maybe in some respects even a manifesto.”

“It’s accessible and beautiful writing that’s thought-provoking, spiritual and uplifting. It’s like he knew what we needed,” said Julieta Sherk, landscape architect, professor, and J. William Fulbright Global Scholar.

And among the many positive reviews on Amazon, one reader offers: “This book is inspiring, educational and uplifting. Each essay and corresponding drawing helped me appreciate the beauty in all types of buildings and the natural world that surrounds them. During these troubled times, we need books like this to remind us to take time to appreciate our surroundings. The combination of Frank Harmon’s artwork and his well-written essays opened my eyes to a new and positive way of viewing architecture and nature.”

Flyleaf Books is located at 752 MLK Jr. Boulevard, Chapel Hill. For more information visit www.flyleafbooks.com (919-942-7373).

For more details on Frank Harmon and Native Places: Drawing as a Way to See, visit the book’s website, nativeplacesthebook.com, and Facebook page.

Native Places

Review: How the Quick Daily Drawing Puts Humanity Back into Architecture

Native Places

(“Back to the Future in London” by Frank Harmon)

From COMMON \ EDGE by Michael J. Crosbie

First published Oct. 23, 2018

Architect Frank Harmon has a discipline: he tries to do a freehand drawing every day. He doesn’t spend much time on them. About five minutes. These short spurts of depiction have the effect of catching lightning in a bottle or, as Virginia Woolf once said about the importance of writing every day, “to clap the net over the butterfly of moment.” To capture these moments you must be fast. The minute moves. Harmon’s drawings feel loose, fuzzy at the edges. You sense their five-minute duration.

Architecture students often are terrified of the quick sketch because of this very looseness, a sense of relaxed attentiveness. They strive to make a “pretty” drawing instead of netting the butterfly. The pretty drawing is evidence of detailed observation, perhaps one’s skill in constructing perspective, the control of the instrument in your hand. But that’s not the point of Harmon’s drawings. Their freeness communicates a different value and goal: to be in the moment, sketching swiftly to seize the scene as it unfolds before you. Harmon’s flickering hand imparts great energy to his drawings, which are less documentary and more like a visual embrace—the kiss of his ink pen and watercolor brush.

Harmon has collected scores of his drawings in a new book, Native Places (ORO Editions, 2018)… READ THE FULL REVIEW

Native Places at Quail Ridge Books

‘Native Places: Drawing as a Way to See’ on Display at Quail Ridge Books in Raleigh

Native Places at Quail Ridge Books

Rene Martin and the rest of the terrific team at Quail Ridge Books, Raleigh’s premier bookstore, set up this lovely display of Native Places: Drawing as Way to See.

Reminder: After needing to postpone the original date (Sept. 15), Quail Ridge will host author Frank Harmon Sunday, September 23, beginning at 2 p.m. as he and the Raleigh community celebrate the release of the book that J. Michael Welton, architecture critic for the News & Observer, calls “a delightful book, destined to change how we see the world.”

Frank will give a brief talk, answer questions, then sign copies of his book and chat with the audience.

 

Quail Ridge Books Event Postponed to September 23rd

Native Places by Frank Harmon

By Juli Leonard, News & Observer

Quail Ridge Books’ Meet the Author and Book Signing event in Raleigh for Frank Harmon and Native Places: Drawing as a Way to See has been postponed to Sunday, September 23rd, beginning at 2 p.m.

If you cannot attend on that day but would like your book signed, Quail Ridge coordinator Sarah Godden asks that you call (919.828.1599) or send an email (sarah@quailridgebooks.com).

If you would prefer a refund, call the store and they will take care of that, as well.

“If you were not planning to attend and are waiting for signed books to be shipped to you,” she said, “we hope to get that done as soon as possible, weather permitting, so they can be shipped out early next week.”