Institute for Advanced Study, Library

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Institute for Advanced Study, Library

Perspective Rendering

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Topographical Map of Property of Institute for Advanced Study
Preliminary Sketch Plan (annotated print)
Preliminary Sketch Plan

Breuer created this design for an unbuilt library for the Institute for Advanced Study at Princeton the same year that he built the member’s housing for the Institute. The library was to consist of two stories above grade housing the reading rooms devoted to each subject, librarians’ offices and some limited space for stacks on the second floor. The majority of the stacks were to be housed in the basement and basement mezzanine levels. The structural components consisted of long, thin concrete columns supporting wedge-shaped trusses running in a north-south direction that narrowed towards the center of the building. Breuer carefully controlled the light entering the simple, rectangular building. He placed a sun screen of terra cotta flue tiles turned on their sides in front of the windows on the east and west elevations. The north or entrance elevation featured thin windows around the edges of the façade, creating clerestories for the second floor and basement levels. The horizontal cladding covering the rest of the area was broken only by the ramp leading to the slightly off-center entrance door. The south elevation also featured the basement clerestory and thin, vertical windows at the edges of the façade, but the center was taken up by a geometric composition of smaller windows grouped into a rectangular shape.