Aman Masoomi 222222 - Institut du Monde Arabe (Arab World...

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Institut du Monde Arabe (Arab World Institute) Pairs, France: 1987 Architects Prof: Larry Speck T.A . Eileen Wright 1.“Exterior view of the curved form of the north wing and the rectangular form of the south block” Located on the left bank of the Seine River, stands the Institut du Monde Arabe (IMA or Arab World Institute). The building, which was commissioned by French President Mitterand, is said to be his “most significant architectural achievement”(Ellis 93). Jean Nouvel and the Architecture Studio were selected to design the building with the goal of bringing the Arab culture and Western culture, past and present, to modern day France. The building is to, according to Charlotte Ellis, “foster knowledge of the Arab world, its languages, cultures, and spiritual values; to promote cooperation and exchange between France and the Arab countries; and to enhance relations between the Arab countries and Europe”(92). The curving northern façade smoothly hugs the street below, which runs parallel to the undulating Seine River. Designing the northern facade with a “silk-screen simulating the reflection of the sky-line on the opposite embankment of the river”(Yucel 23), the architects are able to utilize the aspect of line to smoothly transition from one embankment across the open area 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. Yucel explains, “the technology used was the highest building technology available in France and this technology was very smoothly expressed in the architectural vocabulary”(36). 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 it parallels. The glass has a liquid visual appeal, almost as if it is composed of the water from the river. 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 and river from the interior. Although transparent from the interior, spectators on the exterior are unable to perceive
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This note was uploaded on 01/31/2011 for the course ARCHITECTU 45310 taught by Professor Drmovahed during the Spring '09 term at Durham College.

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Aman Masoomi 222222 - Institut du Monde Arabe (Arab World...

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