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Dutch City Hall Decorated With Giant Fingerprints From Locals

Art installation, not careless smudges, decorate exterior of eco-friendly new building

The new city hall of Deventer, Netherlands, has a unique facade that let local residents literally make their mark on the city. The building, designed by Neutelings Riedijk Architects, features a facade of aluminum panels that replicate the fingerprints of 2,264 Deventer residents.

The prints were collected from volunteers over several months at booths stationed in the city's public areas. Each person who submitted a fingerprint was then given a unique ID they can now use to find their mark on the building's completed facade.

Created by artist Loes ten Anscher, the custom-cast fingerprint screens provide an organic counterpoint to the structure's rigid grid. Here's a video of the panels' fabrication process:

The building's proportions and orthogonal rhythms took cues from traditional buildings nearby, helping it fit within the existing historic streetscape. The new city hall also connects the Deventer's two most important squares, providing a useful, light-filled public space.

Spectacular Deventer City Hall is covered in the magnified fingerprints of local residents [Inhabitat]