Following a sequence of awards and honours, KAAN Architecten published a “brick-coloured” book about Utopia Library and Academy for Performing Arts in Aalst capturing the intricacies of its design.
The book includes a text written by architecture critic Ruud Brouwers describing the history of this peculiar project and its relation to the city of Aalst, accompanied by a rich illustrative and photographic documentation.
Utopia Library and Academy for Performing Arts has been slotted into the urban fabric of the city center creating three new squares alongside adjacent streets. The new building integrates into its design the ‘Pupillenschool’ building from 1880: its historic façades blending perfectly with the new structure through a dialogue of materials.
The complex is enriched by the vibrancy of the two seemingly opposite programs it comprises – the library and the academy for performing arts. The windows offer unobstructed views through the building showcasing the bookshelves and the rehearsal spaces for the various performing arts. The complex is not ornamented but is itself an ornament for the city.
Browse the full publication here.