Mind & Matter


Forest in a Box

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DUS Architects' Unlimited Urban Woods Pavilion, exterior and interior photos.


Amsterdam dwellers eager to escape the urban heat for some greenery need not travel far. DUS Architects has kindly created a portal to a silvan landscape in the middle of a public plaza in Oosterdokskade. Reminiscent of the magical closet in C.S. Lewis’ The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe, the Unlimited Urban Woods container is a small piece of urban furniture that transforms into a seemingly endless woodland setting upon entry. Making use of several cleverly placed mirrors, the structure creates the illusion of an infinite forest with only a single tree. According to architect Hedwig Heinsman, "It's a space with its own horizon, where you can flee the city in the middle of town."




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About the Blogger

Blaine Brownell

thumbnail image Minnesota-based architect and author Blaine Brownell, AIA, is a self-defined materials researcher and sustainable building adviser. His "Product of the Week" emails and three volumes of Transmaterial (2006, 2008, 2010) provide designers with a steady flow of inspiration—a 21st-century Grammar of Ornament. Blaine has practiced architecture in Japan and the U.S. and has been published in more than 40 design, business, and science publications. The recipient of a Fulbright fellowship for 2006–07, he researched contemporary Japanese material innovations at the Tokyo University of Science. He currently teaches architecture and co-directs the M.S. in Sustainable Design program at the University of Minnesota. His book Matter in the Floating World was published by Princeton Architectural Press in 2011.