When you view it at street level, the Brooklyn Public Library’s Central Library looks like an imposing literary fortress, with a magnificent front door lined with Art Deco motifs of famous characters from great books.
But the architects behind it also gave the building a whimsical touch: they designed it to be shaped like an open book. The spine is at Grand Army Plaza, with one cover along Eastern Parkway and the other on Flatbush Avenue.
“In the nearly thirty years that had passed since breaking ground on the Central Library building in 1912, the modernist aesthetic, with its clean lines and austere façades, had taken hold. . . .
“The new library building would be briskly modern, and the very shape of the building—with two wings stretching out like the covers of an open book—would reflect the purpose of the institution itself,” states the Brooklyn Public Library website.
The open-book design is probably best viewed from the air, but the second photo, taken during construction, offers a sense of it. Clever, right?
Tags: Brooklyn architecture, Brooklyn Library Flatbush Avenue, Brooklyn Public Library Central Library, Brooklyn under contstruction photos, Grand Army Plaza Brooklyn 1940s photo, Library shaped like an open book