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paper2 - The curving northern faade smoothly hugs the...

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The curving northern façade smoothly hugs the street below, which runs parallel to the undulating Seine River. Designing the northern facade with such a gentle curve, the architects are able to utilize the form of line to smoothly transition from the open space of the river into a functional landmark representing Paris in the 20 th century. By using glass panes rhythmically placed covering the whole northern façade, the building presents a sense of modernity and sophistication to the observer. In addition, the use of glass by the architects enhances the sensual effect of how the building flows almost effortlessly in response to the physical features directly north. Described by Nouvel as “a 60-meter-long Venetian blind”(qtd.in Ellis 2), the massive transparent face allows for picturesque views of the city from the interior. Between the northern and southern sections of the Institut du Monde Arabe , the architects’ plan provides a “deep slit”(Yucel) from the west, which acts as a gateway to the square courtyard or “heart”(Arab) of the IMA.
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