CENTRAL PARK, NEW YORK
The designer was asked to research, create, and depict outdoor locations using the topographic definition in this project exercise. The site for this project was a part of New York city’s magnificent Central Park, “The Dene.” The objective of this project was to create space while intervening in the topography of the site.
During Central Park’s construction, Japan gifted around 2500 cherry blossoms to be planted in the park as a token of the friendship between the US and Japan. But today, there is hardly any Japanese influence in the park that one comes across. In order to represent the friendly ties between the two countries, the inspiration for this project was a Japanese zen garden. Inspired by the elements of a zen garden- water, rock, hill, and plants- the motive was to represent all of these via one topographic, architectural intervention. Water waves or flowing water is considered sacred in Japanese culture, and hence is the curved shape of the topography. The mini hills from different directions come together to become a gigantic wave-like structure representing the former sacred belief. The literal idea was to inculcate all of the elements of a Japanese garden in an abstract manner. Different parts of this site are covered with sand and gravel, while others are with plants. This area was intended as a permanent setting for temporary programs such as art installations, audio walks, cohort yoga classes, sitting areas, etc.