Living Synergies, 2016
Temporary installation
Wood, steel reinforcing
8’ x 8’ x 25’

Design, fabrication, and project management

Commissioned by Art on the Atlanta BeltLine

Collaborators: Kennesaw State University, Technoglow, Cabot Stain, & many dear friends

Sherman, Jihan. “HOME + COMMUNITY / Living Synergies on the Atlanta Beltline.” Review of Living Synergies. Estelle + Boots, 23 September 2016. 

Living Synergies is an interactive public art installation designed by Mandy Palasik and Nghi Duong that challenges our perception of “home” as a static place of private refuge, suggesting the collective memory of people, place, and experience is what defines the notion. Situated along the Atlanta BeltLine Eastside Trail, the installation welcomes visitors through a portal, symbolic of a traditional house composition with a human-scaled open entry symmetrically defined by a gabled roof. Inside, one is drawn into an infinite hallway where a series of plywood frames compose the familiar enclosing structure - the “walls” and ”ceiling”.

As one trespasses further into the tunnel-esque abyss, the structure’s rigid geometry begins to morph, eroding away the perceived “walls” and “ceiling” as if worn down by the elements of nature and time exposing the site’s contextual urban and natural dichotomy. The resulting unfamiliar form at the end of the “hall”, a bench-like organic mass, leaves the visitor to ponder its domestic purpose. Is it part of the structure or merely an artistic remnant of the house decomposition? In essence, the hallway leads to an open and boundary-less “living room”, where the adjacent views of the Atlanta skyline, lush parklands, community development, and stream of trail goers - all in-sync, become the ever-changing backdrop. The bench-like mass serves as an integral and communal piece of furniture within the “room”, where inhabitants are welcome to gather, reflect, converse, and enjoy the surrounding place. Home is neither permanent nor insular.