This Beautiful Library in Berlin Is Shaped Like a Human Brain

(Photos: Felix Loechner)

If you attend the Free University of Berlin, you’ll have to pay tuition despite its name. The school got its name because it was founded in West Berlin during the Cold War, so the name refers to liberty rather than price.

Still, you’ll get access to that school’s amazing Philological Library. From the outside, it looks like a brain, which is an excellent architectural concept for a library. The famous British architect Norman Foster and his partners designed it. The library is filled with beautiful curves and slopes, just like an organic brain. The translucent exterior panels let in natural sunlight to accompany the interior electrical lights. You can see more photos at Designboom.

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Seattle has a landmark library. It is glass, and beautiful. They put in an "Up" escalator that rises majestically through to the 9th floor. Due to budgetary constraints, they did not install a "Down" escalator, so you get to queue up at one of the few elevators, or take the rather unimpressive fire stairs back down. A classic case of function following form. A rather boring and much cheaper conventional building would have been adequate and they could have afforded a "Down" escalator.
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