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John Rylands Library Glass Totem Pole

One of the most challenging and impressive projects t4 design has ever had the pleasure of being involved with, was the production of an artistic glass installation by designer Derek Hunt for the John Rylands Library in Manchester.

The project involved the creation of a glass totem pole, an endeavour that embodied a number of manufacturing processes in order to produce the imposing structure that stands there today. For t4 design, it was just the sort of project the company thrives on, with the manufacturer of the glass components requiring digitally printed interlayers laminated between two sheets of glass.

The commissioning artist Derek Hunt said: "In approaching this project I wanted to create a glass installation that would embody the spirit of the John Rylands Library, reflect and celebrate its many collections of rare books, manuscripts and archives and help create a sense of place. The visual language used in the design is modern in character, employing glass, steel and light in a carefully controlled palette of colours.

"The design, called 'TOTEM' alludes to the wide diversity of subject matter contained within the Library's collection and the original listed building that adjoins the new entrance wing. It utilises a vernacular colour scheme of stone whites, bronze, sandstone pinks, oak browns - together with pale blues and olive greens - to create a monumental, sculptural piece which acts as a visual conduit between the old and new buildings.

"TOTEM includes some of the internationally famous collections within the Library. Its contemporary design compliments and harmonizes with the rectilinear idiom of the new entrance wing, in particular with the array of recessed windows which greet the viewer on entry to the atrium, and echoes the use of glass and stainless steel to be found in the balustrades of the staircase."

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Artistic glass installation by designer Derek Hunt

Glass Totem Pole in Detail

Glass Totem Pole in Detail

Glass Totem Pole in Detail

Glass Totem Pole in Detail

 
 
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