Dezeen Magazine

Bjarke Ingels unveils "BIG Maze" for Washington's National Building Museum

News: Danish firm BIG has unveiled plans to install a wooden maze with a concave surface inside the National Building Museum in Washington DC.

BIG, led by architect Bjarke Ingels, will use Baltic birch plywood to build the 18-metre-squared maze in the west court of the National Building Museum's Great Hall.

BIG Maze at National Building Museum Washington

The architect says the structure will borrow forms from mazes throughout history, from ancient Greek labyrinths to European hedge mazes and modern American corn mazes. Starting with a height of five and a half metres, it will gradually diminish towards its centre.

"The concept is simple: as you travel deeper into a maze, your path typically becomes more convoluted," explained Ingels. "What if we invert this scenario and create a maze that brings clarity and visual understanding upon reaching the heart of the labyrinth?"

BIG Maze at National Building Museum Washington

"From outside, the maze's cube-like form hides the final reveal behind its 18-foot-tall walls," said Ingels. "On the inside, the walls slowly descend towards the centre, which concludes with a grand reveal - a 360 degree understanding of your path in and how to get out."

The "BIG Maze" will open on 4 July and will remain in place until 1 September. Visitors to the museum's upper-floor balconies will be offered an aerial view.