Murmuration pulls on catholic inspirations to draw attention to how the city’s development might become more integrated with its ecology via engagements with its plants and animals. The swooping structure takes its cues from the paths of migratory birds in flight, drawing visitors in with curvy lounge chairs integrated with and suspended from aqua gillnetting. Perforations reference tree canopies of both nearby Piedmont Park and the leafy neighborhoods that surround the museum. To top off the theme, bird feeders ornament the hula hoop metal framing, which was designed in collaboration with Atlanta engineers Uzun+Case.
Zooming out to city scale, the 2,350-square-foot canopy references the trees that sustain the city’s biodiversity, regulate stormwater runoff, and cool residents and their homes. From above, the interlocking tensile mesh covering resembles a pool of trees. According to the museum, visitors are supposed to “perch and nest” in concert with the birds visiting the feeders. Formally, the installation resembles SO–IL’s Spiky, its project for Beijing’s Olympic Park, which evokes metal mesh pinecones.
Before arriving in Atlanta, Murmuration was fabricated and assembled by Factor Eficiencia in Mexico. The firm posted process shots of the install to Instagram, seen below.
Although the installation will be parked on the museum’s plaza until November 29, it is intended to be reinstalled in other locations. The hypothetical movement, SO–IL says, mimics the flyways taken by billions of birds over North America each year. (It has a bigger carbon footprint than a flock of traveling birds, but we digress.)
For those able to visit, more information about Murmuration and museum’s hours of operation can be found here.