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David Chipperfield’s Photo Phobia Leads to Interesting Anti-Photography Debates


Try as we might, we just can’t escape Iowa, can we? We found this bit of interesting over on Jessamyn West‘s blog, which lead us to learn that David Chipperfield is particularly camera shy. Story goes is that West was visiting the Des Moines Public Library, a beautiful structure designed by the starchitect, and decided to take a few photos. She was stopped almost immediately by a library employee and later, upon contacting the branch by email, was told the policy was put in place to not allow photographs of the building without permission, with this bit of explanation: that Chipperfield is “very sensitive to photos being taken and the possibility of them being used for commercial purposes.” While we understand the starchitect’s and the library’s concerns, and who isn’t familiar with the crack down on photography inside and out of buildings anymore, this particular policy seems more than a little uncomfortable, given that it’s a public structure paid for by taxpayer dollars, and unlike say a federal courthouse, is intended to be entirely open arms and overtly welcoming. And in any instance of these anti-photography policies, shouldn’t there be some sort of enforcement-only-when-needed plan in place when it comes to discerning between the person with the small point-and-shoot taking a few quick snaps and the other lugging in some big Hasselblad setup? But we digress. There are a lot more interesting thoughts to read over on Archinect‘s post about it and in the Flickr comments on the one photo West managed to grab before she was shut down.

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