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The Landscape Installation EVERY Facebook user Needs to Visit!

Great Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake

 “The Disconnect” – Crater Lake by 24° Studio In today’s frantic and technology driven society, it is all too easy to become engulfed in social media. Although these virtual spheres present opportunities for people to instantly get in touch and share life experiences, in reality, nothing beats an old fashioned face-to-face conversation.  Let’s face it, do we really need to see an image of the latest delicacy our pseudo-friends cooked for dinner? With their temporary installation project ‘Crater Lake’, Japanese architectural firm 24° Studio have attempted to promote the lost art of social interaction to somewhat alleviate the societal disconnect brought about by social media. This hybrid, public playscape, urban intervention, and sculpture landscape installation sustains social interaction by providing an environment where people are able to meet and absorb the beauty of the surrounding landscape with a 360° panoramic vista.

Crater Lake, southwest, view, afternoon. Credit: 24d-Studio

Crater Lake, southwest, view, afternoon. Credit: 24d-Studio

What was the inspiration? The design draws inspiration from the strong social ties forged by the local community of Kobe, the location of the installation, after the Great Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake of 1995 devastated the area and its natural surroundings. Although it shouldn’t take a natural disaster for people to socialize once again!
Great Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake

Great Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake. Credit: Taken on the January 17, 1995 by Masahiko OHKUBO, CC 2.0

The Structure The form of this urban intervention is what first catches the viewer’s eye – its smooth and undulating surfaces coalesce into a visually compelling appearance. The complexity of its continuous and rhythmic exterior shouldn’t go unnoticed. The frame, constructed of wood for its natural qualities and structural capacity, is in fact made up of 20 pre-assembled radial parts. Each part consists of a series of free-form ribs composed in segments with horizontal support and cross bracing for rigidity.
Crater Lake, southwest view. Credit: 24d-Studio

Crater Lake, southwest view. Credit: 24d-Studio

Crater Lake, detail. Credit: 24d-Studio

Crater Lake, detail. Credit: 24d-Studio

 
Crater Lake, detail. Credit: 24d-Studio

Crater Lake, detail. Credit: 24d-Studio

The gentle slope the frame creates provides a variety of open and unconstrained settings allowing people of multiple generations to socialize through engagement with the structure. Form follows function Whether it serves as a playspace, for sun shading/sun bathing, for breeze protection, or simply as a communal space used for the dying art of conversation. Although ultimately directed towards adults, it presents an enticing invitation to cavort for kids. Every surface of this playable sculpture can be utilized, with space for climbing, sliding, hiding, performance, quiet play, and flexibility – the user can even reorganize the seating!
Crater Lake, west view, sunset. Credit: 24d-Studio

Crater Lake, west view, sunset. Credit: 24d-Studio

Landscape installations of this nature are under recognized as an artistic medium. ‘Crater Lake’ is an exceptional example of a landscape installation with a contemporary twist, but also stands as a monument to what playgrounds can become when viewed as forms of public art. Importance of this landscape installation In 2013, living in such a fast paced and immersive digital reality has left the majority of people glued to their iPhones as though they are their ‘get out of jail free’ cards, letting social media cheat them out of wholesome life experiences day after day. Ergonomic spaces such as ‘Crater Lake’ provide opportunities for people to let go of this social disconnect and engage with one another in a fun and playful setting.
Crater Lake, south view. Credit: 24d-Studio

Crater Lake, south view. Credit: 24d-Studio

Although only temporary, I vote permanency. Who knows, if these start popping up around the world, you might even be free to ‘check in’ at one all too soon – just so the world knows you are still capable of social interaction without the use of the World Wide Web! Recommended Reading:

Article written by Paul McAtomney Return to Homepage

Published in Blog

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