Tuesday, April 2

10E2148: Utrecht University Library

Photo via WAA

Designed by Wiel Arets Architects (WAA), the Utrecht University Library in the Netherlands walks quietly and carries a big stick. Clad in glass etched with a papyrus motif (see what they did there...)  the library  incorporates "4.2 million books, 1,000 seats, 450 parking places, 300 workstations, 3 shops, 1 auditorium and 1 bar - the UBU [Utrecht University Library - ed.] comparable to a data recorder, is more than a place where people can consult books, it is a place where they can work in a concentrated fashion, but also one where they can meet other people without the need of any other stimulation except the atmosphere that the building radiates." -via Archinect.

Photo via WAA
"The walls and ceilings of the interior are black and matt, while the floors are white and shiny. The bookshelves are black, while the worktables are white. The predominant black color characterizing the interior is critical to creating the atmosphere of concentration, security, and silent communication essential to the function of the library. The black interior creates a feeling of local enclosure, allowing the inhabitants to conduct the private activity of concentrated study in a public place of collective identity. The only exceptions to this color scheme are the red rubber surfaces used in the book checkout area, the information desks, the auditorium, the bar, and the lounge, all of which are related to the itinerary of public movement through the building."  -via WAA
Photos via WAA

Photos via WAA
"A light, shiny floor provides enough reflection of natural or artificial light to illuminate some the million books that are on open shelves, while the long white tables make it possible to read a book or to consult electronic information without too much effort." -via Archinect.

Photo via RoryRory

Photo via Veerbeek

Photo via Baamshad

With a building such as this it would be tempting to show modern angles and black slab shots only - but that is a pet peeve of mine and a mistake I think for libraries. V glad to see so many shots with PEOPLE in them... Or was this designed solely to accommodate the punchline that books are black and white and red (read) all over...