video tour

This virtual/video tour is lead by the Seattle city librarian and main supporter of the architectural project, Deborah L. Jacobs. Throughout the design and construction process Miss Jacobs was instrumental and a strong supporter of this innovative design. Intriguingly this representation is called a tour, implying an exploration or a visit around the building, where relations between spaces can be understood, but despite showing several images of both the exterior and the interior of the library, no coherent space-time continuity is illustrated, but rather different spaces are shown without almost any relational content, except for the information on which floor they are. Balance the lack of physical space continuity in this tour, there is an interesting interrelation between different mediums, such as photographs, diagrams, facts described and even a direct quote of the review by the New York Times architectural critic, Herbert Muschamp (also in this blog). Also significant in the context of our seminar, and explained in this tour, is the combination of print media, digital media and technology in this library, where books are tagged with RFID tags, and most processes are automated. Notoriously some detractors of the library criticize the abundance of computers in the children’s area. For these critics, children already have too many digital distractions in their life, and in a library should be focusing on encouraging children to read and use print material. This discussion is associated with the issue of different modes of perception, already debated in our seminar, where digital technology prompts a new mode of perception and understanding of the world, or a different “wiring” of the brain, particularly for children immersed in this media from a very tender age. Also in this children’s area the transition between print and digital media is not seamless.


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