(Almost) daily architectural musings and imagery from New York City
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Judging by the photos alone, the library appears to have been conceived as a bunker of knowledge. Austere, uncompromising and unwelcoming externally, it belies the light, open and interactive volume within, which probably does fulfil it function extremely well. An introverted, protected and shielded space of study and contemplation.
The outside looks dead.
I totally didn't like it from the outside. Also the entrance could be made in a better way. but after seeing it from the inside i must admit that i really loved it. sure it's all white and clean but the colors of the books and people creates such a nice atmosphere. Plus the view from the top is amazing.
I agree with the previous comments. The outside looks pretty boring and uninspired. The inside, however, epitomizes German organization and order. The patters of the railings and books mesh together to create a very interesting look.
I'd like you all to come to Stuttgart and visit the library. I'm living in Stuttgart, I'm an architect AND a user of this library - and it's awful. Just plain awful. There are a lot of pictures of it who look good, but in reality - it's boring and banal. All must be squarish, all must be fit in the design, but it doesn't work. You walk and walk and walk - unoriented, after the third turning you don't know where you are because you can't look outside. You don't find a place where you want to stay and read in this library, it's only a book-storage-room. it's the only building where I am offended each time I read the Welcome-Sign at the front-door - I am NOT welcomed there. And it's placed in the middle of nowhere, nobody cares how you could go there, a library needs to be inside the town, in the middle of the town. A library needs to be the heart of the city an need not to own a room which is called "the heart" but its a sort of mausoleum. It's a very good lesson for architects to use this building. So you'll learn, design is not all. Tine
A moment ago, before I got to read the comments here, I was thinking of saying that I am not a fan of the library's exterior. But then, it seems that everyone who has commented here has the same opinion as mine. I do like the clean look of the interior though. But I'm just saying that strictly and only with regard to aesthetics. As for functionality, I can very well imagine and agree with what doppelblog has said... it looks like it's just a warehouse for books (or in doppelblog's words, "book-storage-room). I don't even see a single table in any of the interior pictures except for the tops of the two-level shelves placed here and there (that is if one can even consider them as tables where people can write on). What if you need to read or refer to several books simultaneously and need to jot down some notes? In that case you would have to place all the books on the couch beside you (or on the floor), open a book on your lap, and hold up your note pad to take down notes. Or, you would need to sit on the floor and use one of the couches as a table/desk. Anyway, my opinions are only based on the pictures I see on here... I hope doppelblog would read my comment and tell more about the library.
I think the exterior looks kind of dead with the dull and light tone of a color choice. A library is supposed to evoke that fun and exciting atmosphere to entice people to come inside to explore the books collection. However, this particular design looks more like a storage unit center and people will not come in if they do not know it is actually a library. A more fun color combination should have been considered.
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