Dutch building incorporates 22 emojis into its façade

The emoji building is part of a larger mixed-use development built around a 150-year-old oak tree.

April 25, 2017 |

Photo courtesy Bart van Hoek, Attika Architekten.

Emojis tend to elicit fairly strong reactions from people. Many people love to use the small ideograms while texting and emailing like modern day hieroglyphics. Others experience a visceral hatred any time they see one of the little buggers.

This dichotomy is best exemplified via a teaser trailer for The Emoji Movie. On one hand, the movie studio felt secure enough in the general public’s love of emojis to invest money in a feature film. But on the other hand, the trailer has received over 78,000 dislikes (compared to just 8,000 likes) on YouTube since its release.

Regardless of what the prevailing opinion of the general public may be, one architecture firm decided to take emojis out of the digital world and incorporate 22 of them into the design of one of its building’s façades.


Photo courtesy Bart van Hoek, Attika Architekten.


The red brick structure, which resides in the Dutch city of Amersfoort, has horizontal bands of white concrete acting as floor demarcations. At each intersection where the brick and the concrete meet a small decorative circle is stamped in the concrete. On the side of the building that faces the town square, these concrete circles become emojis.

The building is a mix of ground floor retail and residential units and is part of the second phase of a larger mixed-use development. The second phase creates a more fully-fledged mall and adds more shops, restaurants, and apartments to connect to the shopping center that already exists.


Photo courtesy Bart van Hoek, Attika Architekten.


A 150-year-old oak tree acts as the development’s centerpiece and gives it its name: “Plein Rond De Eik,” which translates to Place Around the Oak. A car-free town square helps to keep the public space as pedestrian friendly as possible. A 21,500-sf grocery store, a library, and a school are included in the development.

While the emojis may cause some passersby to groan and shake their heads, the emojis will also act as a visual timestamp; the architects hope the feature will be a unique reminder of the time period the structure was built in. 

For more images and information, click here.


Image courtesy Bart van Hoek, Attika Architekten.

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