Though the central glass pyramid of the Louvre gets all the attention, the other pyramids of the Louvre can be just as dramatic (if the perspective is set correctly.)
Visiting nearby Canada means looking at a mirror-version of the United States, reflected across the border. Like looking in a mirror, everything is still recognizable. Up is still up. Down is still down. But the brands and the metric units and the nationalism is different. Does looking in the reflection of Ottawa in the Shaw Centre reverse the transformation?
An added bonus: this is technically a self-portrait, with my tiny self down in the foreground.
The Ottawa Convention Centre’s fantastical facade of fenestration is a lovely example of the way a pattern of triangles can be assembled to form all sorts of other surfaces with complicated geometries. From the standpoint of symmetry and group theory, it’s quite elegant; from the standpoint of a passer-by on the street, it seems a bit sinister.
UC Berkeley’s Energy Biosciences Building looks pretty awesome at sunset and has a great staircase. More of that surreal, futuristic staircase is on display in today’s photo. What I really like about this image, though, is the sense of texture that it gives. The polished, precast concrete floor, the wood ceiling, the thick glass windows, the brushed steel of the elevator: every material is used in a way that best emphasizes its physical properties. The mixture of matte and gloss, rough and smooth, makes it at once a sophisticated and welcoming space.
Skyscrapers really are marvels of engineering. Just think about what it takes to erect one of these massive buildings. I captured this shot in the financial district of San Francisco on a recent outing and decided to see what I could capture by pointing my wide angle lens straight up at some buildings from the sidewalk. Looking up at the sky like this really makes you feel small.
I’ve shown you the inside of the Energy Biosciences Building before, but I’m particularly happy with the way this shot captures the grandeur of all of this wood, steel, concrete, and glass. The sun casts the best shadows and refractory patterns through it all. (Well, maybe not THROUGH the concrete–but on it, anyway.)
The University of British Columbia’s campus has the odd quality that many modern campuses do. The vast majority of the buildings are post-war additions, and carry the strong characteristics and visions of each of their respective architects. This particular building caught my eye for the way it integrates a Japanese-style bridge, pool, and island into the courtyard of what could otherwise be a glossy but unremarkable structure.
The combination makes me think of the entrance to some sort of futuristic dojo in a cyberpunk novel. No wonder William Gibson calls Vancouver home.
Today’s photograph comes from the lobby of the newly opened Energy Biosciences Building, where I was lucky enough to get a late-night tour. Here, scientists and students focus on the problem of developing next-generation energy solutions, including biofuels and solar power. Though it will soon be bustling with life, the building is presently occupied by empty offices and cubicle skeletons. The modern surfaces, all wood and glass and brushed steel and matte concrete, really convey the mission.