Dutch building features “emojitecture”

A Dutch building has been built with 22 white concrete emoticons embedded on the outside.

Interspersing one side of the brick façade, the "emojis" feature various expressions taken from the popular messaging app Whatsapp.

Appearing in a random sequence, they display winking (😉), sad (😖) and laughing faces (😄), with a surprised face (😮) crowning the building.

The Plein rond de Eik (Square round the Oak) building designed by Dutch firm Attika Architekten contains 23 residences, a 2,000-sq m supermarket, shops and restaurants.

Changiz Tehrani (pictured), Attika’s project architect, said: "In classical architecture they used heads of the king or whatever, and they put that on the façade.

"So, when you look at this building in 10 or 20 years, you can say ‘hey this is from that year’."

He added: "With our architecture we always like to put in small details that make the project a little bit more than a boring building. Architecture is not a religion for us; you also have to have fun."

Tehrani decided not to paint them on as it would have "been cheesy". Instead, wooden molds were used to cast the ideograms in concrete.

Sean Khorsandi, an architecture professor at the New York Institute of Technology, said: "Architecture is serious. We’re using copious materials, and we’re taking up land. There is a responsibility that goes along with that.

"If everything is a joke, reduced to this disposable ‘I like it in the moment’ fad, that’s a dangerous attitude to have."

Images courtesy of Attika Architekten/Bart van Hoek

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  1. Has science gone too far?

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