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Salk Institute (La Jolla, California)

Salk Institute (La Jolla, California)

The Salk Institute, located in La Jolla, designed in 1959 by Louis Kahn is undeniably an architecture classic.  We were fortunate to get a tour of the Salk Institute since we arrived on an afternoon when the space was closed. After spending too much time taking photographs from outside the gates, the security guards relented and let us roam the grounds.  It is a dream come true to visit this architectural masterpiece.  First of all, the view framed by the two mirroring buildings of the Salk Institute is just magnificent.  One truly senses the expansiveness and the tranquility of the environment when walking around the travertine marble open plaza.  The runnel located on the centered of the plaza provides a physical as well as emotional connection to the Pacific Ocean.  One is constantly aware of Kahn’s intentions on the play of scale. There are series of bridges that connect the six story towers designated for various functions.  A series of lightwells activated all the spaces and circulations around these courtyards.  Kahn’s clever use of concrete, teak, lead, glass, and steel enables the buildings to feel modern yet warm.  This is a place that can forever lift the human spirit.