cover image Waiting for Filippo

Waiting for Filippo

Chronicle Books, Michael Bender, Meachum. Chronicle Books, $19.95 (10pp) ISBN 978-0-8118-0181-2

The architect Filippo Brunelleschi and his influence on Renaissance Florence are the twin subjects of this highly specialized pop-up book. Bender's informative text elaborates on aspects of design and architecture while placing Brunelleschi in historical context, detailing the artist's work on the Duomo of Florence, Santo Spirito, the Pazzi Chapel and other brilliant achievements. Illustrations dominated by terracotta have a Florentine air to them, but the flaps and pop-ups are a disappointment, deployed without much imagination. Seeing a 3D picture of the loggia of the Foundling Hospital or of people strolling past the Duomo does little to enhance a reader's appreciation for those works. Bender's egregious use of paper-engineering seems ironic indeed considering his salute to Brunelleschi for developing a theory of perspective ``by which an artist creates the illusion of depth on a two-dimensional surface.'' Ages 8-up. (Sept.)