Some people travel for a good time, others do it out of obsession – climbing the world’s highest peaks or seeing every Vermeer picture. Our latest picks for Just booked (our series of beautiful coffee table books) is Tales of Dragons & Pagodas: Celebrations of Chinoiserie and it’s a way to travel the world through two layers of obsession. The book is a world tour based on Aldous Bertram’s obsession with chinoiserie, itself a 17th and 18th century design craze based on European obsession with the Far East. .
The book, published by Vendome, is a visual delight, which should come as no surprise to anyone already familiar with Bertram through his curated Instagram feed. Dragons & pagodas traces the history of chinoiserie and the variety this obsession creates, whether it’s the elegant bathrooms in Wales, the tearooms of Rhode Island, or wonders like the pyramid ceilings at Santos’ Palace. Lisbon.
Bertram tried to create a coffee table notebook that will make you more than just pull out a notepad to write down all the palaces and houses you own. need to visit, but also give you a better understanding of such an influential and enduring component of the world of decorative arts.