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Frank Gehry Goes To School

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Gehry fashion, Disney Concert Hall

From the Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles to the Guggenheim Museum in Barcelona, Frank Gehry's architectural works forever change the landscape of whatever space is lucky enough to host one.  This fall, students at Princeton University joined this fortunate club, when the Lewis Library opened on campus.  Created to house the university's astrophysics, biology, chemistry, geosciences, mathematics, physics and statistics collections, the building took four years and $60 million to construct.   88,000 pounds of embossed stainless steel and 620 tons of clay brick were combined with glass, steel and stucco, to create an exterior that reflects the design of nearby buildings on campus, but with an unmistakably Gehry twist.

In true Gehry fashion, the building's eye-catching exterior barely hints and the wonders to be found within its walls.  The light-filled main level features an atrium, the main library two modern bowl classrooms. Gehry designed the entry's large, curved reception desk, along with shelves and furniture found throughout the building.  Study areas and rooms feature colorful chairs, including some classic, comfortable  Egg Chairs  designed by Arne Jacobsen.  A star is cut into the ceiling separating the first and second floors, and on the second story, lights hang from a ceiling almost 34 feet above.  It's enough to make any dedicated would-be scientist become an architecture major!

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