Land of Giants by Choi + Shine Architects.
Despite the significant environmental and visual influence of infrastructure and civil engineering projects, architects rarely participate in their design and planning. When architects do get involved, conventional strategies include minimizing the physical reality of the work or applying aesthetic flourishes to a predetermined structure.
Choi + Shine Architects’ recent proposal of a new typology for Iceland’s high-voltage power lines and pylons suggests an alternative strategy. Despite the ubiquity of common electric utility structures, they are rarely noticed. However, Choi + Shine’s “Land of Giants” proposal brings immediate attention to this unexploited project type. The Boston-based firm’s anthropomorphic modification of traditional power-line supports represents an intriguing convergence of science and art at a highly visible scale. At turns whimsical, haunting, and poetic, Land of Giants proposes skeletal caryatids for an electric age.