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Columbia University Digital Knowledge Ventures The Architecture and Development of New York City with Andrew S. Dolkart
image The Skyscraper City The New Millennium
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The New Millennium
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This kind of idea—of the fractured quality of urban life—becomes a very important element in more recent skyscraper design. It is here in Fox and Fowle's Condé Nast Building and on other new buildings that are going up in the Times Square area. At its most sophisticated, it is evident at the LVMH Tower, which was designed by Christian de Portzamparc—one of the great French architects of our time—who designed a modestly scaled building for a purveyor of luxury goods. It is on Fifty-seventh Street, a very sedate street. The building has angles of glass that intersect with one another to create this almost fractured look, which not only is an indication of perceptions of contemporary life but also, of course, draws attention to the building. On this sedate street of stone buildings, you are looking at this fractured building, which changes from the day to the night and is most dramatic when it is lit up. Portzamparc understood that New York skyscrapers were often about marketing. It is evident here, too, that he wants you to focus on this building and, of course, on LVMH (Louis Vuitton) and the other products that this company makes, just as Chrysler wanted you to focus on the Chrysler Building.


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