Internationally renowned for his wide range of artistic feats, Doug Aitken’s MIRAGE is nothing short of an architectural wonder. Where the San Jacinto Mountains open into the Coachella Valley of Southern California lies the “living art” piece, reflecting its surroundings with an entirely mirrored façade. MIRAGE is part of a series of pieces for an outdoor art exhibit, Desert X, and can be publicly viewed until the end of October 2017.
Its form mimics both the historical and architectural references of the California Ranch residential style. “The California Ranch Style, which is unique to the West, was informed by the ideas of architect Frank Lloyd Wright, who believed that architecture should be both in and of the landscape,” describes Aitken. Streamlined after architecture’s post WWII boom, the style is synonymous with Western suburban living.
Aitken further explains, “MIRAGE is reconfigured as an architectural idea: the seemingly generic suburban home now devoid of a narrative, its inhabitants, their possessions. This minimal structure now functions entirely in response to the landscape around it. The doors, windows, and openings have been removed to create a fluid relationship with the surrounding environment.”
The kaleidoscopic piece takes Wright’s ideas of organic architecture to new realms as the piece is entirely camouflaged within nature itself. Due to the reflective qualities of its exterior, the piece transforms based on focal viewpoint, times of day and any nearly optical or natural quality that could temporarily influence its appearance.
The piece becomes part of the existing landscape as it reflects the ground, the mountains, and the sky. The fluidity of its design is inevitable, “Each experience of this living artwork will be unique.”
Aitken is an American artist who utilizes numerous mediums in his acclaimed pieces from sculpture to film. His works have been viewed in world renowned galleries including, but not limited to, The Serpentine Gallery in London, The Whitney Museum of Art, and the Centre Georges Pompidou in Paris. He now resides in California where MIRAGE is located as well.
Information courtesy of Doug Aitken
Photography courtesy of © Lance Gerber via Doug Aitken and Desert X
DISCLAIMER: The following project does not feature Alucobond® aluminum composite material (ACM). The “Industry (Architecture)” section of our blog focuses on extraordinary architectural works from around the world. While this project does not feature our ACM, we have included comparable samples to what was used in the project above.