It is a widespread belief in many doctrines, perhaps shared by the MVRDV architects study, which by this important part of the body seem to be inspired by the construction of the Tianjin Binhai Library.

If viewed from the outside, in fact, the structure can be interpreted as the shape of an eye, with the sphere in the center of the atrium as a pupil and eyelids dotted with a precise interruption of the façade lining.

Inside, the library is made up of a succession of curved shelves, arranged in steps that surround the atrium, but also respond to three precise functions: accommodate a million volumes, integrate internal stairs and be used as seating.

Sunday Escape - The Tianjin Binhai Library  The eye as a symbol of knowledge, even profound, spiritual. | Image 0
Sunday Escape - The Tianjin Binhai Library  The eye as a symbol of knowledge, even profound, spiritual. | Image 1
Sunday Escape - The Tianjin Binhai Library  The eye as a symbol of knowledge, even profound, spiritual. | Image 2
 

"We opened the building by creating a beautiful public space inside; a new urban living room is its centre" - said Winy Maas, co-founder of MVRDV, talking about the project - "The bookshelves are great spaces to sit and at the same time allow for access to the upper floors. The angles and curves are meant to stimulate different uses of the space, such as reading, walking, meeting and discussing. Together they form the 'eye' of the building: to see and be seen."

The library consists of five levels that contain various educational facilities. The basement is used as service areas and archive; on the ground floor there are areas of reading for children and seniors over the main entrance, the auditorium and terraced access to the upper floors; while on the first and second floor, there are reading rooms, books, and lounge areas. The building includes meeting rooms, computer rooms, audio and office rooms.

Sunday Escape - The Tianjin Binhai Library  The eye as a symbol of knowledge, even profound, spiritual. | Image 6
Sunday Escape - The Tianjin Binhai Library  The eye as a symbol of knowledge, even profound, spiritual. | Image 3
Sunday Escape - The Tianjin Binhai Library  The eye as a symbol of knowledge, even profound, spiritual. | Image 4
Sunday Escape - The Tianjin Binhai Library  The eye as a symbol of knowledge, even profound, spiritual. | Image 5

A curiosity: The Tianjin Binhai public library is part of a new cultural district and, with its 33,700 square meters, is the project completed in less time by the Dutch company MVRDV to date.
Only three years between the first sketch and the opening ceremony.  

image credits Ossip van Duivenbode