Throwing light on the multi-faceted glass

Throwing light on the multi-faceted glass
Photo source
Ar. Apurva Bose Dutta
While the primary function of glass as a building material is to blur boundaries and harness natural light, its diverse implementations in buildings globally, has reiterated its immense potential in being a material that is loved by architects and designers.

Ar. Apurva Bose Dutta takes examples of some glass structures from her various travels to explore this potential of the material.


1. Living within nature

In the residence of Gayathri Shetty, India’s acclaimed architect based in Bengaluru, glass walls initiate a conversation between the house and Nature, with boundaries being extremely blurred to merge the interiors and the exteriors.

Throwing light on the multi-faceted glass


2. Connecting with people

The Melbourne Visitor Centre, by virtue of its glass structure and central location in Melbourne’s loved Federation Square, makes a direct connect with people who throng this CBD area and are tempted into the structure to find out more about Australia’s cultural capital.

Throwing light on the multi-faceted glass


3. Unifying structures

The Louvre Pyramid in Paris is perhaps the most famous addition to a building in the history of architecture. Serving as the primary entrance to the museum, the main pyramid is created out of approximately 700 rhombus and triangular glass segments and sits nicely within the Louvre Museum plaza area, giving the existent building in French Renaissance style, a point of focus.

Throwing light on the multi-faceted glass


4. Encouraging visual interactions

The bridge enclosed in glass, connects the two buildings of the Pitt Street Mall at the Market Street in Sydney and retains the essence of the public space by encouraging visual interactions throughout.

Throwing light on the multi-faceted glass


5. Curtain walling

One of the favourite uses that glass has been put to, has been for curtain walling as seen in skyscrapers all over the world. Example in this case, is the 98-storey Trump Tower in Chicago, named after Donald Trump, the President of the United States of America.

Throwing light on the multi-faceted glass


6. Arty Glass

The Leonard French stained-glass ceiling at the National Gallery of Victoria International at Melbourne is the largest suspended stained glass painting in the world. Stained glass, for decades, has featured as an important part of cathedrals, mosques and other places of worship. Besides being aesthetically pleasing, it restricts views and controls light.

Throwing light on the multi-faceted glass


7. Skylights

St David's Dewi Sant, a famous shopping centre in Wales, Cardiff features skylights in various designs that let light naturally flow in and illuminate the shopping centre. Another roof in glass and cast iron in a separate galleried hall is the highlight of the design of the shopping centre.

Throwing light on the multi-faceted glass


8. Partitioning Spaces

The glass brick wall in the State Library of New South Wales at Sydney, offers an innovative use of partitioning spaces, without shutting off the light.

Throwing light on the multi-faceted glass


9. Atriums

Glass atriums are known to instil a sense of rejuvenation into interior spaces, as experienced in the Crystal Gardens at the Navy Pier in Chicago, where a six-storey glass atrium houses a botanical garden.

Throwing light on the multi-faceted glass


10. Filtering light

In the ongoing Australian Islamic Centre at Newport, Australia, Pritzker Awardee Architect Glenn Murcutt has fitted varied coloured glasses into 96 painted gold lanterns.

These glasses filter light into the mosque through triangular skylights, illuminating the lanterns in different colours of yellow, blue, green and red during the course of the day. These also cast a magnetic pattern on the walls and the columns.

Throwing light on the multi-faceted glass

Text & Pictures:  Ar. Apurva Bose Dutta

Apurva Bose Dutta is a Bengaluru-based architectural journalist ( and is the Architecture & Design Content Partner at Saint-Gobain India Pvt Limited–Glass Business.

600450 Throwing light on the multi-faceted glass

Others also read

The wide parts of the Schüco ALB large louvre blades mounted in front of the façade are between 3.00 and 3.50 metres high and are moved by means of motors and gearboxes, which are integrated in the aluminium load-bearing profiles.
The façade of the RAL building in Bonn unmistakeably showcases the identity of the client and user of the building.
Glazing Vision: Eaves flushglaze rooflight creates feature for commercial tuning shop
Glass rooflights for commercial buildings are being specified more frequently, as architects are tasked with creating work spaces that are more engaging and that maximise productivity.
Tirana New Bazaar
Guardian SunGuard®  HD Royal Blue coated glass was used to glaze the roof of the pavilion and Guardian ClimaGuard® Premium2 coated glass was used on the façade.
DFI Awarded World Class Riverfront Park Project
Diamon-Fusion low-maintenance coating to be applied to over 31,000 sq.ft. of high-profile glass at Gathering Place Riverfront Park.
Anthony Darkangelo gives the opening remarks at GlassCon Global.
The third GlassCon Global, an every-other-year event, kicked off Thursday in Chicago, and this edition of the conference again lived up to the “global” in its name.


sedak GmbH & Co. KG

Add new comment