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Last year, Alexander Isley Inc. Designers (Redding, Conn.) started work with HMA2 Architects on the development of an environmental design program for The Westport Library (Westport, Conn.). After many months of transforming the space, the new library is open and up and running. Their inspiration for the interiors came from the library's logo, developed for the library years ago by Open. The ellipses suggest that theres's more to come, and the Alexander Isley team used that as a departure point: How could they use punctuation as a technique to link up (and comment on) all the things that a library is, does and can be?
The entrance porticos feature custom extruded letterforms that spell out WESTPORT. (In this case, "West" reads toward the west and "Port" overlooks the adjacent Saugatuck River.) The three spherical bollards help define the walkway and give a hint of what's to come inside; just inside the lower entrance, visitors are welcomed with a typographic mural.
The "three dots" idea continues throughout the main space, offering views into the children's area on the top floor, combined with a clock that once an hour provides particular satisfaction to those who like it when things line up. In keeping with the open and flexible nature of the spaces, ARTfx signs fabricated a series of standalone "movable type" bookend letters that can be repositioned as requirements change.
The library has interesting twists, turns and corners where people and activities interact and intersect; so, they developed a series of signs that wrap around corners, columns and door frames to suggest how words and ideas can meet in interesting and unexpected ways. The assignment also included the development of a comprehensive donor recognition program—a book-inspired dimensional structure incorporates all contributors to the fundraising initiatives. The (square) donor recognition and wayfinding signs help guide visitors through the spaces in a simple, clear and organized way.
Back to the dots...every once in a while they slipped in a question mark or exclamation point. After all, libraries are all about interesting questions and exciting answers!
More at http://alexanderisley.com/