These Beautiful Buildings Actually Look Like Blankets

Architecture has the power to evoke feelings and memories in viewers, not to mention a specific source of inspiration the designer may have harnessed. Some are straightforward, like Frank Gehry’s Binoculars Building, while others represent an abstraction of one or more ideas, and so the meaning can change depending on the perspective who’s looking.

That’s how a building with a gridded exterior of colorful squares, like Jean Nouvel’s Torre Glòries, or a glass building whose windows gently bow out from a matrix of diamonds, like Herzog and de Meuron’s Prada store in Tokyo, can recall something as simple and down to earth as a quilted blanket. Patchwork-style exteriors, even on the highest of high-design architecture, can still call forth the idea of using what’s on hand to create something new, however mismatched, or mending something over time, or the careful planning it takes to create the dazzling aesthetic harmony that’s possible with basic colors and shapes.

Below, ADrounds up five of the most beautiful buildings in the world that were inspired by blankets.

Founded in 1965, Drop City was a community of counterculture artists in southern Colorado who created the very first "hippie commune." The movement began with Drop Art, performance art-style works inspired by artists like Allan Kaprow, and led to a village of live-in Drop Art domes fabricated from a quilt-like assembly of multicolored car roofs and scrap metal. The structures were inspired by the architecture designs of Buckminster Fuller, who eventually awarded the group his Dymaxion Award in 1967. By the early 1970s, the inhabitants moved on and the commune was abandoned.

South Korean artist Choi Jeong-Hwa used 1,000 salvaged doors to turn the facade of this 10-story building in Seoul into a charming blanket-like patchwork of muted colors. Installed in 2009, the public work showcased the artist's favorite medium—recycled materials—to cover the scaffolding that surrounded the structure.