A bright and cheery illusion symbolizes hope in a city that was wrecked by a 7.1-magnitude earthquake in 2010. Christchurch, the second largest city in New Zealand, is still recovering from the quake that affected hundreds of thousands of lives. In hopes of brightening the atmosphere for the recovering city, artist and Christchurch resident Mike Hewson created "Demolition," an art installation that appears weightless and almost invisible when viewed at certain angles.
Spanning Colombo Street, the city’s main artery, the elevated walkway was made defunct when one of the connecting buildings became marked for demolition. Drawing inspiration from the walkway’s inoperative state, Hewson’s installation renders the walkway nearly invisible at certain vantage points. In an interview with Co.Design, he explained that he wanted to paradoxically reconstruct the site through a process of deconstruction, mirroring Christchurch’s recovery process of adding new development through the “deletion” of crumbled buildings.
The large-scale digital print installation was printed on adhesive vinyl and covers the side and underside of the walkway. By extending the building facades on a permanent horizontal bright blue band of sky, the site-specific design aims to “temporarily enliven a dead space in the hope that it might be preserved for the future.”
Images via Mike Hewson