Library in Old Town, Alexandria


Mistress of buildings, lady of libraries, this urban special collection library is dedicated to Seshait, ancient goddess of libraries and architecture, who stretched the cord to translate the plan of the heavens onto the earth for building. Ruminating on the word library reveals it uniquely names both object and subject, vessel and contents, suggesting a collection of books is simultaneously defined by its titles and its architecture. As the tactile properties of the book’s page affect the character of the reader’s trajectory, the nature of the library affects how one reads. This will be a study of the magical reality of the coincidence of the matter of physical space and the substance of dream space hinging through the electronic space of hypertext and physical space of readers. In considering the design of storing books for the sake of the book and reading books for the sake of the reader, the fundamental act of how a reader takes a book to the light becomes an architectural ritual procession. The site will be at the terminus of King Street, currently occupied by a small municipal park and the Old Old Dominion Boat Club. The Library should include a public sculpture gallery and be able to accommodate visits from boats.



Studio Co-Authored with JAAN HOLT