Life-Affirming New Hague Building is a Call to Our Better Selves | Home Design Find

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Life-Affirming New Hague Building is a Call to Our Better Selves

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Transparency is visually made a literal design element at this winning design for the new International Criminal Court in The Hague.

You can actually see right through the building and see the new green life growing within it, through a fine mesh envelope, providing an analogy to the transparency and restoration that takes place within, for victims of crimes against humanity, genocide and war crimes.

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Far from being just another anonymous and sterile building, trust, hope and faith in justice and fairness must be clearly communicated by such a building.

The Danish firm Schmidt Hammer Lassen Architects beat out a shortlist of the top 20 strong architectural firms including David Chipperfield, Mecanoo Architecten, OMA/Search, Ingenhoven, Wiel Arets, and Kengo Kuma & Associates to design the landmark building with their respectful articulation of exactly these values.

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The below ground level courts, arrived at by ‘moving down’ to the Court through the spacious staircase are beautifully daylit across the full ceiling from the interior courtyard above. Here, perpetrators of the most serious crimes of concern to the international community are held to account.

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The pleasant and positive atmosphere throughout reinforces that call to our better nature.

“Gardens have always existed as part of all cultures and all religions. With flowers and plants from each of the 110 ICC member countries, the parterre gardens rise up as a green landmark and a symbol of unity, regardless of nationality and culture,” as Bjarne Hammer, the Creative Director and Founder of the firm puts it.

Here design is used to remind us of our common humanity.

Images: Schmidt Hammer Lassen Architects
Source: Dezeen
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