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First impressions may be deceiving

First Impressions May Be Deceiving

Michael Jordan

For many years now, people have been fool by appearances. Someone may

look at the exterior of an object and expect one thing when actually the exact

opposite is waiting inside for them. For example, an unexpecting person picks

off a grape from the bunch and bites into the fruit while dreaming of a mouthful

of juicy, sweet grape but in reality receives a surprisingly bitter splash with

the first bite. Or when a person first looks at a power vision 3-D picture

they only see mass chaos until a few short seconds later a sailboat evolves out

of the picture floating among the earlier seen chaos. When visiting Madison,

Wisconsin, someone may pass by the UW-Fieldhouse and mistake it as a barn

instead of a basketball arena. So too, the Karrmann Library can be easily

mistaken for a bank as you come upon it from the exterior.

The first feature about the Elton S. Karrmann Library that makes it seem

as if it were a bank is the solid construction of the library. Much like the

construction of a bank, the library was also constructed with security and

protection in mind. Also, the impressive exterior of the library resembles that

of a modern bank. The concrete support pillars not only add strength but also

give the library this impressive look of a bank. These light white-grayish,

square pillars are 2 by 2 ft. and almost half the way up them there are two

engraved lines that run all the way around them about 6 in. from the other.

Concrete, a sign of strength, is also used in the patio around the tower

entrance. This grayish colored concrete was poured in slabs of 3 by 3 ft.

sections. Concrete was also used as dividers between floors. Between each

floor, the redish-brown, 4 by 8 in. bricks are split up by a light grayish

horizontal concrete layer. The items used in the construction of this building

show the strength

needed for the protection of a bank.

Secondly, the setting of the Karrmann Library is unique and creative,

like a modern bank, by placing the first floor of the library into a hill.

Beneath the patio is a loading dock which allows you to enter the basement.

This is similar to that of a bank because they have loading docks which give

access to the vault in the basement. The sidewalks on the mall side come to a

"V" at the roofed entrance. Also, there are benches near a shrubbery garden at

the mall entrance. Near the entrance of the building is an after hours book

drop off which resembles a bank's after hour deposit box. Another similarity to

a bank is the parking that is available to the west of the library. The setting

of the Karrmann library very closely resembles that of the setting around a


Now, the feature of the Karrmann library that most closely resembles it

to a bank is the windows in the library. The 2 by 4 ft. windows on the east,

west and mall sides are indented into the building. The bottoms of the window

sills are slanted bricks which would make it very difficult for any to succeed

in climbing and breaking into one of these windows. Another security measure

pertaining to the windows are that they very narrow and would make it next to

impossible for someone to squeeze through them while trying to hang on and

keep from falling. These windows on the third and forth floors are also grouped

in pairs giving them the look of office windows seen in a bank. Along the

front entrance of the mall side are enormous, 10 by 10 ft. picture windows that

not only add style to the building, but also serves as a security measure by

allowing a plain view to anyone who passes by, including police. The styles of

windows in the Karrmann Library resemble greatly those found in many modern ba


The Karrmann Library has many close resemblance's to that of a modern

day banks. These similarities are in the solid construction for protection, the

library's unique setting in the land and the style of windows used throughout

the building. So, if someone asks you directions to the bank, be sure to point

them downtown so they don't get confused and stop at the Karrmann Library to

cash a check.

Source: Essay UK -

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