Flatiron Plaza

As the winter holiday season approaches, people and cities tend to enter a state of holiday frenzy. The beautiful part of all this madness are the decorations and the gifts, of course. Flatiron Public Plaza Holiday Design Competition is at its second edition this year, and it is organized by Van Alen Institute and the Flatiron/23rd Street Partnership. The winner of this year’s contest is SOFTlab, a design studio based in New York City, with their NOVA installation.

Courtesy of SOFTlab

Courtesy of SOFTlab

SOFTlab’s winning proposal is basicly a macro, human scale, kaleidoscope, that captures and diffuses the surroundings, creating both a visual and a sensorial experience by ”remixing the surrounding iconic buildings with color, light, and the reflections of pedestrians”. An interesting mix of sensations is created, for different ”users”. You can capture beautiful pictures with an ”iconic and festive figure from above”, or from the distance, or, if you would like to have a more intimate experience, you could enter this colorful ”crystal-like, mirror-surfaced playground”, and re-live a fun childhood activity in a grown-up manner.

Courtesy of SOFTlab

Courtesy of SOFTlab

NOVA, the winning installation, will be revealed to the public later this month, on November 18th. Set to become a tradition in the future, the contest aims at bringing to life new ideas by using new materials and technologies. The installation will be placed in the plaza in front of the Flatiron building, in Flatiron District, New York.

Courtesy of IMABA

Courtesy of IMABA

This year’s structure is very similar to the one that was the winner last year, mostly at a visual level. ”New York lights”, by INABA, the 2014 winner’s proposal, was an installation with mirrors, that reflected the surrounding buildings at different angles, during daylight, with mirror framed ”windows”, through which visitors could see bordered previews of the surroundings. And it became a  ”popular selfie spot for the holidays” last Christmas holiday season.

By Cristina Juc

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