Our team was honored to create the focal fixture for the new National Library of El Salvador, known there as la Biblioteca Nacional de El Salvador (BINAES). The largest and most modern public library in Latin America, this $54 million development will serve as a cultural center for the city and houses an auditorium, coffee shop, children’s area, robotics section, gaming area, art gallery, and more — not to mention 360,000 books.
Urban planning specialist Santiago Caprio of forward-thinking firm ufficiis based the design of the library on El Salvador’s waves, reefs, and volcanoes. The organic, sea-inspired shape of our Crystal Shell was the perfect answer to the question of the library’s massive atrium. We collaborated with Caprio to create the perfect chandelier to cascade down and connect all seven floors. Composed of an astounding 201 Crystal Shell pendants, the chandelier floats down almost 25 feet from the ceiling, suspended by monopoint grippers. Our goal was to inspire a feeling of awe for the expected 5,000 daily visitors, to mimic the exalted feeling that every library should create around learning.
The chandelier shone bright at the library’s inauguration on November 15, 2023, led by the President of El Salvador. As BINAES will be open 24/7, we designed the crowning chandelier to be easily visible from afar, so that it may beck book enthusiasts inside.
Designers: Santiago Caprio & Ufficiis