Excavating Tiki's finest offerings

TASCHEN’s Book of Tiki provided the blueprint for the re-appreciation and revival of Tiki style. Almost completely wiped from the consciousness of Americans until recently, Sven Kirsten’s tome put Tiki on the map as a unique pop culture phenomenon. Never before had Tiki culture’s visual power and pervasiveness been revealed with such detail and insight. Not only did the book inspire the erecting of many new Tiki bars from New York to London to Berlin to Prague to Waikiki, but also motivated a myriad of Tiki artisans to pick up the chisel and carry on the forgotten tradition, while spurring many others to create their own home hideaways, making "Tiki" a household name again.

This new follow-up book, which brings together the two recent retro trends of mid-century modernism and Tiki style, is bound to lift the Tiki craze to a new level. With his usual mixture of ironic detachment and genuine enthusiasm for the subject, Kirsten shows us how primitivism and modernism were two sides of the same coin in the 1950s and 60s. Decor deities and ersatz ancestors outrageously merged in the modern brutalist furniture from the house of Witco, a company that outfitted Elvis Presley’s Jungle Room and Hugh Hefner’s Chicago Playboy pool. This was design porn at its best.

cover: © Estate of Stanley Stubenberg
The author:
Sven Kirsten was conceived on a freighter of his grandfather's Hamburg-Chicago Line. Following the call of the big world, he moved to California at the age of 25. Kirsten studied at the American Film Institute in Los Angeles and began shooting music videos in the late 1980s for The Cramps, Tom Waits, Sergio Mendes and others. After years of hunting down pieces of the puzzle of Polynesian Pop, Kirsten has developed a singular insight into the Cult of Tiki and has become the country's most eminent Tiki archaeologist.
Tiki Modern

Tiki Modern


Hardcover, 9.1 x 10.6 in., 336 pages
$ 39.99

Online currently not available
  • Reviews
The new bible - and I've got it - I am so delighted and happy !!! Today is my lucky day I guess - maybe luck comes to true aficionados sometimes...

I fell in love with the first bible ("The book of Tiki") in 2001 - I will never forget this hot summer day and the happiness and joy to see this perfect book - the true urban archeologist found all those treasures and put all this work together to create this perfectly designed book....created a wave of enthusiasm, aficionados all over the world - a reinvention and brought back to life what nearly seemed forgotten....

Been waiting for the second edition ever since... been ringing the shop if it's already there... and today... suddenly and unexpected... - there it was... on a summer's day in 2007. A new chapter begins - a new love and treasured book for all of us - more creativity, polynesian pop dreams and architecture, illustration, people and fantasies and realities on our minds....thank you so much Sven A. Kirsten for your dedication, love and work.
— Unknown on tikiroom.com, United States
  • See also
Type. A Visual History of Typefaces & Graphic Styles (TASCHEN 25 Edition)
Type. A Visual History of Typefaces & Graphic Styles
Softcover, 2 vols. with keycard in slipcase, 9.4 x 12.0 in., 720 pages
New edition, only $ 59.99
Original edition $ 119.98

A visual history of fonts and graphic styles: 1628–1938
1000 Chairs (Klotz, TASCHEN 25 Edition)
1000 Chairs
Hardcover, 5.5 x 7.7 in., 624 pages
$ 19.99

Chairs displayed on their own as pure form