Bending The Rules
Bending the Rules is an inhabitable gateway embedded within the landscape of Austin’s Circle Acres Nature Preserve. The structure consists of a simple 9’-0” cubic steel frame that serves as an armature for a series of colorful ruled surfaces formed with Tyvek wristbands. The wristband—typically an icon of exclusivity—is reappropriated here to create an engaging sensory experience for visitors to the preserve.
The framework of a perfect cube establishes a gateway that spans a pathway within the park. Within the cube, space is shaped and compressed by implied ruled surfaces, constructed by lines of wristbands spanning from one edge of the frame to another. The space of the cube-—a space we think we easily understand—is redefined in a novel way by the aggregation of thousands of wristbands. One may access and pass through the space by bending, leaning, and stepping carefully; because this requires mindful effort beyond simple walking, the participant becomes more engaged in thier immediate surroundings. The scale and nature of the implied surfaces beget a heightened awareness of context: the wristbands themselves, how they define layers of space both within and outside of the cube, and how the park is seen through the layered wristbands. In this way the wristbands, traditionally used to limit access, actually become the common link through which different aspects of the installation are understood.