Art, Design

“The Architect Says” Small Notebooks

Now available on BFI’s online store, “The Architect Says” is a set of three small notebooks containing quotes, quips, and words of wisdom from over 100 figures in design history – including R. Buckminster Fuller. Released by Princeton Architectural Press, our store item is cheaper than the set as listed on, and your tax-free purchase through our online store will support our non-profit institute.

A summary from the publishers: “If there’s anything architects like doing more than designing buildings, it’s talking about architecture. Whether musing about their inspirations (a blank sheet of paper, the sun hitting the side of a building), expanding on each other’s thoughts (on materials, collaboration, clients, and constraints), or dishing out a clever quip, architects make good copy. The Architect Says is a colorful compendium of quotations from more than one hundred of history’s most opinionated design minds. Paired on page spreads like guests at a dinner party-an architect of today might sit next to a contemporary or someone from the eighteenth century-these sets of quotes convey a remarkable depth and diversity of thinking. Alternately wise and amusing, this elegant gem of a book makes the perfect gift for architects, students, and anyone curious about the ideas and personalities that have helped shape our built world.”

The testimonials below come from editorial reviews of the notebook set:

“A pocketbook of inspiration…. Coming across unexpected quotes or ones that hit a nerve makes a flip through the book great. A couple of my favorites includes Jan Kaplicky: ‘It’s not a sign of creativity to have sixty-five ideas for one problem. It’s just a waste of energy.’ and Frank Gehry: ‘I don’t know why people hire architects and then tell them what to do.’ These and other quotes make the book a great gift.” —

“When it’s 4 am and you’re sitting in a confused mess of crumpled trace paper and dull X-acto blades, turn to this trusty compilation and try to find the light.” —

“The Architect Says: Quotes, Quips, and Words of Wisdom gathers timeless wisdom on design and architecture from more than 100 of history’s most vocal-and often dissenting-minds. What emerges, besides the fascinating tapas bar of ideas about the art and science of building, is the subtle but essential reminder that what lies at the heart of creative legacy aren’t universal formulas and unrelenting tenets but perspective, conviction, and personality.” — Brain Pickings