David Chipperfield in Iowa | The Plan
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David Chipperfield in Iowa

David Chipperfield

America settentrionale | Davenport

British architect David Chipperfield is known for his elegant, almost minimal, typically rectilinear compositions. In the middle of the continental United States, Iowa might be classified as a flat expanse of farmland lightly touched by the great American grid of north/south and east/west coordinates. Now Chipperfield has completed not only his first but his second freestanding building in the United States. And both are in Iowa.
Des Moines, Iowa’s capital, has the corporate towers one expects in a city of this importance. The new Central Library starts near the base of some high-rises, then stretches parallel to adjacent low-rise buildings and parking lots to point westward across a public park. “Parallel” is imprecise as the library - atypically for a Chipperfield design - is polygonal, aformal, perhaps even biomorphic.
Beneath a uniform flat roof, the walls of the library...

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