The Salk Institute for Biological Studies is an independent, non-profit, scientific research institute located in La Jolla, San Diego. The campus was designed by architect Louis Kahn. He was commissioned to design the Salk Institute in 1959 by Dr. Jonas Salk, inventor of the polio vaccine. Salk’s vision included a facility with an inspiring environment for scientific research, and Kahn’s design decisions created a functional institutional building that also became an architectural masterpiece. Salk and Kahn – having both descended from Russian Jewish parents that had immigrated to the United States – had a deeper connection than just mere partners on an architectural project. The results of their connection is seen in the design that resulted from their collaboration.
My favorite part of this space is the open plaza. It is made of travertine marble, and a single narrow strip of water runs down the center, linking the buildings to the vast Pacific Ocean.