Sendai Mediatheque Isovist (2015)

An isovist is the three-dimensional volume of space visible without obstruction from any single given vantage point. This analysis of Toyo Ito's Mediatheque in Sendai, Japan shows the ever-morphing isovist volume of an eye travelling through the library. The eye ascends the main elevator shaft, traverses an open floor, and descends by way of the southeast stairs.

Central to Ito's conception of the Sendai Mediatheque as a library for the digital age was the inter-floor visibility allowed by the large perforations on each floor slab, reminiscent of the openness and inter-connectivity of virtual  knowledge production and consumption. At the same time, however, the Mediatheque's novel structural technique of the fragmented tubular steel columns similarly fragments line-of-sight in the horizontal plane across each level. Both these visual consequences of Ito's design can be captured diagramatically in the isovist analysis.

Made with Grasshopper and After Effects. Best viewed at 4K resolution.

Music: "Says" by Nils Frahm