on my way back to the parking lot

These photos are of the Stata Center at MIT, designed by Frank Gehry. I work next door, and tend to cut through the lobby when my path takes me that general direction. Today, I wandered down the stairs and headed out via the third floor terrace on my way back to my car after work.

24 thoughts on “on my way back to the parking lot

  1. That building is one of my favorites on earth. [Um, not that have favorites on other planets, but you know…] I actually lived in Cambridge for over 2 years before I even knew it was there!

    For my top favorite building on earth (where the only candidates are the ones I’ve seen in person), it’d be hard to decide between this one, Casa Batllo in Barcelona, and the Pantheon in Rome. Also, I do realize that in looking at those 3, you’d have to think “one of these things is not like the others… one of these things just doesn’t belong.”

    Anyway, I seem to have digressed. What I really wanted to say was, great photos!

    1. It is a very cool building. I’m quite fond of it, in spite of knowing some of its controversies. I was trying to write more about the building last night when I posted, but it was one of those times when I couldn’t put together 2 sentences without deleting and retyping over and over again.

      I’d never thought about my favorite buildings on earth. I will have to reflect on that.

      However, your list of favorites and suggestion that “one of these things is not like the others” made me want to try to classify them in various ways. Did you realize that one thing Casa Batllo and the Pantheon have in common is that they are listed among UNESCO World Heritage sites? (Both as part of larger groups of sites, namely “The Works of Anton Gaudí” and “Historic Centre of Rome, the Properties of the Holy See in that City Enjoying Extraterritorial Rights and San Paolo Fuori le Mura”.) So Gehry might be flattered to be in such company. (Though perhaps not flattered, exactly. I think he may have a bit of an ego.)

      This, naturally, has led me down a rabbit hole of figuring out which World Heritage sites I’ve been to myself. Hopefully I’ll post my list…

    1. It was pretty distracting when it first opened, but after a few years I got used to it. I guess it’s been 6 years now. But every once in a while I think, “Wow, this is so cool!”

  2. For a minute there I thought you were in Cleveland because that building looks so much like the one Gehry designed for Case Western University’s school of management here. I love looking at it every time we drive by.

    1. Thanks, YTSL!

      As for where I work, while I frequently work *at* MIT, I don’t technically work *for* MIT. My employer is actually my own university, which is across the river. But I have been doing research and other related projects with a couple of professors at a lab at MIT for about 8 years now.

    1. True, az! Not someplace to go when hung over.

      He does use the curving metal surfaces in a lot of his building designs. But one of the things that impressed me about the design of this building is that it also plays off elements of neighboring buildings–namely, the brickwork, the glass grids, and those rectangular windows.

  3. I really love your photographs. You have an amazing eye. I watched you in action and I didn’t even know how you do it. It’s like: Ok we are looking at the same things. But your photos show that NO. You are totally looking at something different. Amazing. I have seen this building often for 5 years now and yet it never occurs to me that this building hides such amazing beauty in its facade.

    1. Aw, thanks, subWOW. That’s a really great comment. I often feel like I look at the world a little differently from most other people. Many times, it just makes me feel like a bit of an oddball. Occasionally, it can feel like an asset. (It’s a feature, not a bug!)

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