In Santiago, Two Chilean Architects Have Transformed a City Park Into a Secret Garden

See the dreamy project that's changing the face of urban recreation.

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An enchanting, delightful art installation has popped up in Santiago, Chile's Parque Araucano. Concave and convex mirrors reflect infinite grassy hills and water features, distorting perception, and creating a secret garden in an otherwise dense city. Conceived by architects Guillermo Hevia García and Nicolás Urzúa as part of the Young Architects Program Constructo (a division of the Museum of Modern Art's annual series of international competitions), the installation, called Your Reflection, won the YAP prize in 2015 and was finally installed in Santiago in March.

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"The possibilities of reflection and deformation are endless," García says. "We wanted to produce an interaction belonging to a world of illusion—more surreal than real." While he notes inspiration from Orson Welles's 1947 thriller The Lady From Shanghai and its famous hall of mirrors scene, it's safe to say the intention of Your Reflection is far from the plot of that dramatic film. Rather, the installation celebrates leisure, and maximizing use of the extremely limited open spaces that city-dwellers have.

Made from three steel planes and reflecting both outward and inward, the project blurs the boundaries of the park. Apart from a few tall buildings peeking above the three-meter-high walls, it's almost appears as if the park is limitless.

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To celebrate, weekends at the pavilion are filled with DJ sets, piano concerts, and plays. García hopes that the program will send visitors into a dreamlike state, "to create a universe of sensations and experiences open to many interpretations." There's only one way to find out!

To learn more about Your Reflection, see constructo.cl.

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