Spanish wunderkind Santiago Calatrava, who last week won the gold medal of the American Institute of Architects, has designed this dramatic structure in Switzerland.
It is an oval glass dome supported on a curving rib cage and bowing central spine. The entire dome and the six floors of library directly below it have been nearly submerged within the rectangular courtyard of a century-old neoclassical building at Zürich university’s law school. Externally, the dome is barely visible above a copper roof on all four sides. Internally, some 500 library desks are arranged in an elliptical ring overlooking the central atrium and lit by the dome overhead.