Landscape Abbreviated
by Nova Jiang

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New York artist Nova Jiang has created a mechanical maze that rearranges itself as you move through it (+movie).

Landscape Abbreviated by Nova Jiang

Called Landscape Abbreviated, it comprises moss-filled planters hooked up to sensors and motors that constantly reconfigure the maze but ensure it's always possible to solve.

Landscape Abbreviated by Nova Jiang

The project was commissioned by the Wave Hill Sunroom Project Space, where it was on show until last week.

Landscape Abbreviated by Nova Jiang

See more stories about machines on Dezeen »

Landscape Abbreviated by Nova Jiang

Photos are by Raymond Yeung.

Landscape Abbreviated by Nova Jiang

Here's some more information from Nova Jiang:


Landscape Abbreviated is a kinetic maze consisting of modular elements with rotating planters, which form a garden that is simultaneously a machine. I am interested in the way that simple interventions can make the experience of space dynamic and unpredictable.

Landscape Abbreviated by Nova Jiang

The planters are controlled by a software program that continuously generates new maze patterns based on mathematical rules; they rotate to form shifting pathways that encourage visitors to change direction and viewpoints as they move through the space.

Landscape Abbreviated by Nova Jiang

I envision this sculpture not as a classical labyrinth built to ensnare, but rather as an architectural abbreviation of grand ideas. In this way, the maze relates to literature, mathematical beauty, game play and the rigor of software programming, as much as it does to architecture and landscape.

Landscape Abbreviated by Nova Jiang

The planters contain live moss collected from the sides of buildings, cracks in the pavement, subway grates and other urban nooks and crannies in New York City’s landscape. Full of particles of broken glass, plastic and other detritus, they form a patchwork of unintentional archaeology.

Landscape Abbreviated by Nova Jiang

Curator: Gabriel de Guzman
Commission: Wave Hill Sunroom Project Space

Landscape Abbreviated by Nova Jiang

Special Thanks: Jacob Tonski & Greg Witt
Software: Olov Sundstrom

Landscape Abbreviated by Nova Jiang

Camera: Raymond Yeung
Sound: Maria Chavez

  • liz

    This would be cool… at a much larger scale.